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Obama Care and The Medicaid Expansion

Posted on August 25, 2013 by admin

The new Medicaid Expansion under Obama Care is a major change in how healthcare is paid for in the United States. The question is, is that change for the better, or is it a change for the worse? Each state is currently making its own decision about that, and the opinions seem to be mixed.

Defining Medicaid Expansion

The Obama Care Medicaid Expansion will kick in on January 1, 2014. At that point, participating states will begin covering more adults under Medicaid than they previously did. The new rule states that coverage must be given to adults that are between the ages of 19 and 65 who have incomes that are 138% or less of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL).

People in that group will not qualify if they fit in the following categories:

  • They are not United States citizens.
  • They are in prison.
  • They already receive Medicare.


The Big Question

The big question being asked is will the new costs of Obama Care expanded Medicaid to each state actually outweigh what the state’s taxpayers have to pay to cover hospital bills that others couldn’t pay? Not only that, but is it worth allowing millions of poverty-level families to go without the healthcare that they really need?
The answer really depends on the state at the moment. That’s because each state has different Medicaid eligibility requirements in 2013. Factors include:

  • Gender
  • Dependents
  • Age
  • Income


Who is Option in and Who is Option Out

However, as of 2014, the government wants to dictate the vast majority of requirements in each state that does not opt out of the Obama Care Medicaid Expansion. Several states feel that they would be better off not to participate. States that have already opted out include Florida, Georgia, and Texas. But that may not be for the reasons that you think.

You see, option out of the expansion doesn’t mean that the states will stop receiving funding for Medicaid. It only means that those states won’t be obligated to spend that funding on their poorest residents. Therefore, they can funnel the money in other directions, allowing their poor residents to go without adequate healthcare. If they do choose to do that, the healthcare prices across the country could rise fairly fast.
Nevertheless, many states seem to feel that participating in the Obama Care Medicaid Expansion plan is a good thing. They feel that it would be worth it for their state, both from a financial perspective and a health perspective. Some of the states that are opting in to the Obama Care Medicaid Expansion are Massachusetts, Michigan, and Oregon. For a complete list of participating and opted out states, as well as more information on the Medicaid Expansion, you can visit