Medicaid expansion is a highly debated issue. Medicaid expansion is part of the Patient Protection Affordable Care Act, aka Healthcare Reform, aka Obamacare. This particular provision is designed to expand Medicaid to millions of Americans by increasing the income level at which individuals qualify. Additionally, the federal government has offered to fund expansion, at 100% for the first 3 years to states and reducing thereafter, who opt to participate in the expansion. The key here is those states that opt into the program. Individual states have the discretion as to whether or not to participate. The majority of the states that are opting out of the program are doing so for mostly for financial reasons. Once the federal government begins reducing the funding amount, states fear they won’t be able to make up the difference.
While financial concerns are certainly valid, where does this leave the Americans who would have benefitted from expansion but whose state decided not to participate? They basically remain uninsured.
Where do the states stand on Medicaid expansion? Should it be up to the individual states? How many Americans will remain uninsured? Is it right to vary by state?