About 5.2 million poor, uninsured adults will fall into the “coverage gap,” created by 26 states choosing not to expand Medicaid under the federal health law next year, according to a study released today
by the Kaiser Family Foundation. (KHN is an editorially independent program of the foundation.)
These people are projected to have incomes too high to qualify for their state’s existing Medicaid programs, but below the federal poverty level (nearly $11,500 for an individual) required to be eligible for federal subsidies to buy private coverage on the new online insurance marketplaces set up by the Affordable Care Act. Medicaid is the state-federal health insurance program for the poor.
“Millions of adults will remain outside the reach of the ACA and continue to have limited, if any, options for health coverage,” the study concludes.
The law provides full federal funding for three years to states that expand Medicaid to cover residents under 138 percent of the poverty level (or just under $15,900 for an individual). But the Supreme Court made that requirement effectively optional for states, and most Republican led-states have opted against expanding the program.
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Source: Kaiser Health News