Last week the American Health Care Act failed to pass in Congress, leaving the current form of the Affordable Care Act (ACA or “Obamacare”) in place for now and for the near future. Though over 200,000 more Utahns are now insured because of the ACA, there are still 80,000 people not covered who fall into the health gap that Medicaid expansion would reach. The ACA allows for states to take advantage of federal funding for Medicaid expansion that would cover these deserving Utahns.
What is Medicaid expansion?
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) gives individual states the option to expand Medicaid to new adults earning up to 138% of Federal Poverty Level (FPL). Without expansion, there is a gap in coverage for 80,000 Utahns who do not currently qualify for Medicaid and are ineligible to receive benefits and subsidies through the federally facilitated marketplace. These are low-income adults who are below the poverty level required for subsidies to buy health insurance, but not poor enough to qualify for Medicaid, thus the “coverage gap”. Medicaid expansion means bringing millions more dollars of federal funding into Utah to help these people get the needed services and treatment they deserve.
In the wake of the failure of the American Health Care Act, both GOP- and Democratic-led Medicaid expansion initiatives are being considered in many states across the nation in order to use federal funding to provide health care to the nations most needy. Just today, a GOP-led Medicaid expansion bill passed in the conservative Kansas state legislature with large majority, while GOP-led efforts were announced this week in Virginia and Georgia and a Democratic initiative has kicked off in North Carolina. 31 states and the District of Columbia have already opted in.
Do you fall into the coverage gap? Do you know people who fall into the gap? Do you currently get Medicaid and want others who are not covered to receive the same kinds of services and treatment you can? Do you believe it’s time for Utahns who have been ineligible for coverage for so long should finally get decent health care?
CALL TO ACTION
- Sign this petition TODAY to call on Governor Herbert, Speaker Hughes and President Niederhauser and the rest of Utah’s lawmakers to fully expand Medicaid to cover those who are still waiting for decent health care coverage and let them know you support Medicaid expansion in Utah to cover some of the state’s most vulnerable population. This petition and more at our Petitions, Petitions! page, updated daily.
- Share your story. If you are one of the 80,000 Utahns ineligible for Medicaid, we want to hear from you and help to amplify your story to let legislators know who you are. If you or someone you know falls into the gap and is willing to share your story, please contact us.