Millions Of People Are About To Get Kicked Off Medicaid. Here’s Why

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Laurel Duggan Social Issues and Culture Reporter
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Between 5 million and 14 million people will likely lose Medicaid coverage when COVID-19 public health emergency ends April 1, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) of 2020 blocked states from disenrolling people from Medicaid until the end of the month in which the public health emergency was ended, according to KFF; the continuous coverage provision will expire March 31. States typically check recipients’ Medicaid eligibility and remove it if they acquire health insurance through an employer or begin making too much money to qualify for the program, according to The Associated Press. (RELATED: Biden Admin Quietly Allowing Medicaid Funds To Cover Rent, Air Conditioning, Cooking Classes)

Medicaid recipients often experience temporary gaps in coverage due to temporary ineligibility, meaning they have to reenroll after being disenrolled in a process known as “churn,” according to KFF; the continuous coverage provision drastically reduced churn by blocking disenrollment.

KFF estimates that 5 to 13% of Medicaid recipients, or 5 to 14 million people, will be disenrolled during the 12-month unwinding period once states are allowed to check recipients’ eligibility again, and the Department of Health and Human Services estimated that as many as 15 million people would be disenrolled.

Each state will disenroll Medicaid recipients at a different pace, but Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Idaho, Iowa, New Hampshire, Ohio, Oklahoma and West Virginia will move to purge ineligible recipients in April, according to AP.

There are about 84 million people currently on Medicaid, up by about 20 million since January 2020, according to the AP.

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