Medicaid Expansion

Bram Sable-Smith / KBIA/Side Effects Public Media

Six years ago, 53-year-old Corla Morgan noticed blisters forming on her neck and back.

“I couldn’t sleep because when I took my shirt off, if my shirt touched my skin, the skin just peeled off,” Morgan says. “I was in really horrible pain.”

Karen Shakerdge

David Hutchinson got health insurance for the first time in his life about a year ago. Now he’s worried he might lose it.


Plan To Scale Back Medicaid Gets Mixed Response In Kentucky

Jun 30, 2016
Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin
Gage Skidmore via Flickr

If Gov. Matt Bevin’s proposal to change the state’s Medicaid system is approved, about 86,000 fewer people will be enrolled in the program by July 2021, according to his administration. That will save the state money, as he’s said, but it’s also raising concerns about lost coverage.

In 2014, the percentage of construction workers with health insurance increases from 64 to almost 69.
Jon Fleshman via Flickr / U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Immigrants saw the steepest gains in health insurance coverage in 2014, the first year for enrollment on the Affordable Care Act's exchanges and Medicaid's expansion, according to a New York Times analysis of census data. Hispanics accounted for nearly one third of the increase in adults with insurance. A smaller percentage of blacks gained coverage, according to the Times, because most poor blacks live in states that chose not to expand Medicaid. 

Is Indiana’s Alternative Medicaid Expansion Working?

Mar 25, 2016
Reginald Rogers in a dental office
Phil Galewitz / KHN

Reginald Rogers of Gary, Indiana owes his dentist a debt of gratitude for his new dentures, but no money.

Indiana’s Medicaid program has them covered, a godsend for the almost toothless former steelworker who hasn’t held a steady job for years and lives in his daughter’s basement. “I just need to get my smile back,” Rogers, 59, told his dentist at a clinic here recently. “I can’t get a job unless I can smile.”

State Refor(u)m

  "A new Mason-Dixon Line has been forming in our health care system," writes Cecilia Vichier-Guerre in an editorial for HoustonChronicle.com. The 2012 Supreme Court ruling that changed Medicaid expansion from mandatory to optional for states led to the current landscape, where a majority of Southern and Midwestern states have opted out, says Vichier-Guerre. With people of color making up three quarters of Texans without health insurance, she argues that her state's decision not to expand Medicaid is contributing to worsening inequality. 

Playing Out The Impact Of More Children Being Insured

Jan 18, 2016
GettyImages-50826030.jpg
D Gorenstein

A new report out Thursday morning from Georgetown University and the group La Raza has found in 2014, some 300,000 Latino children got health insurance, dropping the uninsured rate to less than 10 percent, thanks in part to healthcare law known as Obamacare.

It turns out getting children on Medicaid — even healthy kids — matters more than you might think. Georgetown’s Sonya Schwartz said it’s a kind of golden ticket.

Smoking is the #1 cause of premature death and preventable illness in the United States. And since one-third of Medicaid participants smoke, compared to 17 percent of the general population, you'd think the states would be all about helping people in their Medicaid programs to quit.

But just 10 percent of Medicaid participants who smoke are getting medication to help them quit, according to a study published Tuesday in the journal Health Affairs. That's 830,000 people in 2013.

Brenda Hummel and her 7-year-old daughter Andrea in their home near Des Moines, Iowa. Andrea was born with severe epilepsy and gets her health care through Medicaid.
Clay Masters / Iowa Public Radio

Brenda Hummel’s 7-year-old daughter Andrea was born with severe epilepsy. Like many children with significant diseases or disabilities, she has health insurance through Medicaid. Hummel navigated Iowa’s Medicaid resources for years to find just the right doctors and care for her daughter. But now Iowa’s governor, Republican Terry Branstad, is moving full speed ahead with a plan to put private companies in charge of managing Medicaid’s services, and that has Hummel worried.

A map showing the status of state Medicaid expansion as of July 24, 2015
Anita Cardwell and Kaitlin Sheedy / State Refor(u)m

Congress established Medicaid fifty years ago today as a health insurance program for the poor, with the intention that the program would provide care just as good as what the rest of Americans receive. According to Rutgers University Medicaid scholar Frank J. Thompson, the program has done a lot of good, even if it hasn’t quite lived up to that early goal.

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