Healthcare


States Not Expanding Medicaid Leave Millions Uninsured

by Patrick Riley 04 Oct 2013
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An estimated 2/3 of the poor, minority, and unwed mothers along with low-wage earners will be ineligible for health insurance, despite implementation of the Affordable Care Act. This reality will be most prevelant in states that elected to not expand Medicaid with federal assistance. This population is estimated to be at least 8 million of the poorest of the poor and a demographic the very health law, or Obamacare, was created for.

The online health insurance market places provide federal subsidies for individuals and families who make slightly more money than the population who are at or below the federal poverty level. In some states, to qualify for Medicaid you must earn less than $11 a day, which when enrolled in Medicaid, will preclude individuals from qualifying for federal subsidies and purchasing health insurance online. It is an ironic twist as a large number of online shoppers discovered this Tuesday. When filling out their enrollment and eligibility criteria they discovered, muct to their suprise, that they were ineligible because they qualify for Medicaid.

Southern states, with the exception of Arkansas, have opposed the expansion of Medicaid on the grounds of cost. Most say, any slight increase in Medicaid, a state and federal joing funding, will be too much. In states like Texas, where Medicaid expansion would enroll an additional 24% of the uninsured population would produce, according to the Governor Perry's office, an eventual cost burden of $100 billion dollars in ten years.

Regardless of the economic or socioeconomic reasons, these southern states, where the majority of the country's poorest reside, will see no benefit from offering health insurance because they simply will not qualify for federal subsidies. This disenfranchised population are predominantly black, single Moms, and minimum wage workers. As open enrollment progresses and enrollment demographic information is revealed it will become more evident that the poor and minority workers  in America have been left behind.

You can follow me on Twitter @Patrick_FrostHC or continue to read my blogs on health insurance, healthcare reform, and the health insurance marketplaces on frost.com.

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