Medicaid Expansion in Virginia

Executive Summary

This document outlines the benefits of Medicaid expansion to Virginia.

The Supreme Court?s decision protects a state from losing all its Medicaid federal matching dollars for its current Medicaid program if it fails to implement the ACA Medicaid expansion.  
This essentially gives states the choice whether or not to adopt the expansion, which would offer coverage to people with income below 133% of the Federal Poverty Line (FPL).  While there are now many new questions about the expansion that will need to be resolved by federal regulation and policy ? There is NO DOUBT that the expansion is absolutely critical for Virginia.
Virginia?s Medicaid program, despite its costs, does not rank well when compared to other states.  
Our eligibility level for low income parents is among the worst in the country ? covering only those parents whose income is under 30% of the poverty line.  That translates into an annual income of under $10,000 for a family of four!  And Virginia has no public insurance program for ?childless? adults (who aren?t pregnant, disabled, elderly, or suffering from breast/cervical cancer).  This means that a totally impoverished individual cannot get Medicaid in Virginia.  
The ACA Medicaid expansion changes all this by establishing a new national income eligibility level at 133% FPL. 
  • The new eligibility level will be about $15,000/year for an individual; $31,000/year for a family of 4.  
  • About 425,000 uninsured people in Virginia are expected to qualify.  
  • This will have a huge impact ? offering coverage for almost ½ of Virginia?s one million uninsured.

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