The Biden administration is likely to end yet another core Trump-era policy as it plans to revoke Medicaid work requirements. The HHS is likely to inform 10 states to discontinue the police, sources said HHS Officials have also been reportedly planning to withdraw the past administration’s invitation for states to apply for approval for work requirements.
- This comes close on the heels of an executive order signed by Biden signed last month that directed officials to review and remove barriers to Medicaid coverage.
- Around 70 million people are covered under $600 billion state-run Medicaid plan. This include from infants, to expectant mother, differently-abled and nursing home member. With coverage extended to low-income adults previously not eligible, under the Obama-era Affordable Care Act covered12 million-plus people have gained coverage as a result.
- The Trump administration, however, introducing a change allowed states to require “able-bodied” adults drawing Medicaid benefits to work, volunteer or study. Before the pandemic hit, 20 states had tried to implement requirements after the administration invited them in 2018 to submit such proposals. A federal judge blocked the requirements in Arkansas and New Hampshire, as well as in Kentucky, before the state’s Democratic governor reversed course and dropped its requirements. Two other states, Arizona and Indiana, have blocked enforcement or implementation, citing litigation.
- Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge called the decision by the Biden administration an “overreach of executive power.” “It is unfortunate that President Biden and his administration felt compelled to take steps to withdraw the approval of Arkansas’s work-requirement pilot program without giving it an opportunity to succeed,” she said in a statement. “The one-size-fits-all Medicaid program doesn’t work.”
- The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has maintained that Americans should not face any hurdles in getting health care. “In the midst of the greatest public health emergency in generations, now more than ever, people with Medicaid need access to care,” the statement reads. “This is not the time to experiment or test policies that risk a substantial loss of health coverage or benefits, especially for individuals and communities significantly impacted by COVID-19 and other health inequities.”