Utah’s partial Medicaid expansion

Utah has expanded Medicaid to anyone earning at or under 100% Federal Poverty Level (FPL):

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) today authorized the Utah Department of Health (UDOH) to expand its Medicaid program to approximately 70,000-90,000 Utah adults. The newly eligible individuals can begin applying for coverage on Monday, April 1.

Under the newly approved plan, Utah residents who earn up to 100% of the federal poverty level, about $12,492 for an individual or $25,752 for a family of four, will be eligible to receive full Medicaid benefits. The federal government will cover approximately 70% of the cost (emphasis mine) of the new program; the State of Utah will cover the remaining 30%.

Utah is spending more money to cover fewer pepole with a partial expansion. Right now they have received a waiver to expand to new voluntary populations at the current standard federal match rate. If the legislature had expanded Medicaid to 138% FPL the federal government would have paid 90% of the costs.

Yet, this is an improvement on coverage in the state of Utah as adults who earn between 100-138% FPL are being made no worse off as they still don’t have access to Medicaid unless there is a significant medical qualifying status but they still have access to premium tax credits and CSR-94 Silver plans.

Sometime over the summer, Utah will be asking for a second waiver from CMS. That waiver will ask for the Federal government to pay the enhanced ACA 90% match for only people earning under 100% FPL. The 100-138% cohort would remain on the exchanges.

There are some complex interactions with subsidies, differential morbidity and silver loading which can lead to some fascinatingly unusual results on a distributional basis if there is a partial expansion to only 100% FPL. But at the base, tens of thousands of people will have health insurance starting next week.

4 replies
  1. 1
    rikyrah says:

    They make me sick….

    Yes, happy for everyone who will get it…but, this is NOT WHAT THE VOTERS VOTED FOR.

    They are loathesome human beings..they voters VOTED and STILL their evil azzes won’t do right.

  2. 2
    Tom Levenson says:

    I’m glad that some Utahans will be better off, but it is notable how much work the GOP put into making sure that the merely very poor as opposed to the extremely poor won’t benefit.

  3. 3
    Duane says:

    You have to drag the stupid ideologues kicking and screaming to the side of common sense and decency. I’m willing to do that. Fuckem.

  4. 4
    edward markham says:

    I would appreciate some coverage of what i understand to be a hot mess in Idaho, from the analysis of what happens next.

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