Arkansas Waiver Program and Its Adverse Impact on Reproductive Health Services

Executive Summary

Work requirement programs in Medicaid are not only legally suspect, but they are nonsensical, undermining the intent of Medicaid – to provide health care to low-income individuals and families (so that they are able to find and keep work). The Trump administration is pushing states to add work requirements to their Medicaid programs. It recently approved Arkansas’s Medicaid waiver program that includes a pernicious work requirement program that will undermine access to comprehensive reproductive health care for thousands of low-income people in the state. National Health Law Program’s Candace Gibson and Rachel Holtzman in this fact sheet examine myriad ways the so-called “Arkansas Works” project will cut off women of color, low-income women and other underserved communities from vital reproductive health care. “For example,” Gibson and Holtzman write, “a woman or a transgender man subjected to these provisions [of the Arkansas waiver program] may not be able to receive a prescription for hormonal contraception or may not be able to receive contraceptive counseling from their providers because of the disruption in coverage these provisions will create.”

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