Medicaid Expansion Under Attack

Republican lawmakers introduce The American Health Care Act and it could jeopardize Medicaid insurance for hundreds of thousands in Michigan.

Republicans are making good on their promise to repeal and replace Obamacare. They have now introduced legislation that will dramatically change health insurance in the United States. We are especially concerned with proposed elimination of the Medicaid expansion.

The Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) allows for individuals making up to 138% of the federal poverty level to qualify for Medicaid. The federal government pays most of this cost. It allows low income individuals to obtain health insurance. Hundreds of thousands in Michigan have now qualified and it was approved by Governor Rick Snyder.

A study published by the University of Michigan showed Medicaid expansion has resulted in the creation of 30,000 new jobs. The economic benefit of providing health care more than makes up the cost to the state.

The newly introduced American Health Care Act will phase out the Medicaid expansion starting in 2020. Enrollment will freeze and people will gradually fall out of the system. Individuals without Medicaid coverage at that time will be out-of-luck.

Funding will also change to a “per capita cap” system, where states get a lump sum from the federal government for each enrollee instead of paying the full cost. This could result in Medicaid benefits getting slashed for people who are grandfathered into the program.

Many of our clients cannot afford to purchase health insurance. This is especially true when workers’ compensation benefits have been disputed. Medicaid expansion allows these individuals to seek treatment while their case is pending. Proof can then be obtained that a medical condition is indeed work-related and the responsible party can be held accountable. This protects taxpayers because costs are not unfairly shifted.

Medicaid gets paid back if a person is successful with their workers’ compensation case. Its lien is capped at 50% of plaintiff’s net recovery if full value cannot be obtained. This allows both the enrollee and Medicaid to share in any recovery. A true win-win situation.

Now is the time to act if you want to protect Medicaid. Contact your elected representatives and tell them to oppose Medicaid phase out.

Michigan Workers Comp Lawyers never charges a fee to evaluate a potential case. Our law firm has represented injured and disabled workers exclusively for more than 35 years. Call (855) 221-2667 for a free consultation today.

Related information:

The American Health Care Act: the Republicans’ bill to replace Obamacare, explained

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons, by Bill David Brooks.

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