Feds say “no” to partial Medicaid expansion

From NPR’s Shots blog:

The Affordable Care Act, as passed by Congress in 2010, assumed that every low income person would have access to health insurance starting in 2014.

That’s when about 17 million Americans — mostly unmarried healthy adults with incomes up to 133 percent of poverty, or about $15,000 a year — would gain access to Medicaid.

The program currently covers parents, children, the elderly and those with disabilities. Because adding more people to the program could overburden state budgets, the federal government would pay 100 percent of the additional cost for the first three years, phasing down to 90 percent.

But the Supreme Court upset this plan last summer when it decided the Medicaid expansion should be optional. Republican governors started to ask if they could expand Medicaid just somewhat, but still collect the additional federal funding for it.

After several months of consideration, the Obama Administration delivered its decision Monday, as part of a series of questions and answers for states about Medicaid expansions and the set up health care exchanges.

Read the complete post and listen to the story on the blog.

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