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Doc who backs governor’s Medicaid plan likely will win House seat

First Published Jun 26 2014 12:49PM      Last Updated Jun 26 2014 10:36 pm

| Courtesy Ray Ward Campaign Bountiful physician Ray Ward won the Republican primary for House District 19.
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His campaign website has photos of some of his uninsured patients who are dying, or have become disabled, because they can’t afford health care. Among them is a man with untreated Crohn’s disease. "The inflammation around his intestines has eaten four holes out the side of his abdomen. He needs surgery and very expensive IV (intravenous) medication but he has no insurance so he hasn’t gotten them," the website said. "He would be covered under the governor’s plan."

Ward said it’s too early to tell how debate on Medicaid will shake out. He’s one vote, and lawmakers and health professionals are all over the spectrum on the issue, he said.



AT A GLANCE

A doctor in the House

Recent years have seen a steady rise in the number of health professionals in Utah’s Legislature.

Senators

Dentist » Allen Christensen, R-North Ogden

Orthodontist » Pete Knudson, R-Brigham City

ER physician » Brian Shiozawa, R-Cottonwood Heights

Pharmacist » Evan Vickers, R-Cedar City

House

Surgeon » Stewart Barlow, R-Fruit Heights

Family physician » Michael Kennedy, R-Alpine

Nurse » Becky Lockhart, R-Provo

Family physician » Ed Redd, R-Logan

Hospital executive » Douglas Sagers, R-Tooele

Hospital executive » Dean Sanpei, R-Provo


His primary win does, however, reinforce opinion polls showing a majority of Utah Republicans and conservatives support Herbert’s plan.

Support in political corners is also growing. On Thursday the Utah Association of Counties, a group representing the state’s 29 county commissions, voted unanimously to support Herbert’s plan.

"In the echo chamber of the Republican House, there’s a belief that Republicans don’t support the Medicaid expansion or Healthy Utah," said Nehring. "But in the real world, everything indicates this is something people do care about and want the Legislature to solve."

kstewart@sltrib.com

Twitter: @KStewart4Trib

 

 

 

 

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