Kaiser Family Foundation survey: Medicaid eligibility levels higher in expansion states

Many more U.S. citizens are able to qualify for Medicaid coverage through the implementation of Medicaid expansion, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.

The finding is from the Kaiser Family Foundation's recent report entitled "Medicaid and CHIP Eligibility, Enrollment, Renewal and Cost-Sharing Policies as of January 2016: Findings from a 50-State Survey."

Here are three findings from the Kaiser Family Foundation's survey.

1. In 2015, Medicaid and CHIP were primary sources of coverage for low-income children and pregnant women. Approximately 48 states cover children with incomes at or above 200 percent of the federal poverty level, and 19 states have begun covering children within 300 percent of the federal poverty level. Thirty-three states cover pregnant women with incomes at or above 200 percent of the federal poverty level.

2. Medicaid expansion has played a major role in increasing coverage for low-income adults. In 2015, three states — Alaska, Indiana and Montana — expanded Medicaid. Thus, as of this month, 31 states have expanded Medicaid eligibility to parents and non-disabled adults with incomes up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level. Twenty states haven't expanded coverage, and eligibility levels are 42 percent for parents and 0 percent for childless adults. Many of the citizens in non-expansion states are left in the coverage gap.

3. Median eligibility levels are higher in expansion states than in non-expansion states. Although eligibility levels between expansion and non-expansion states vary most widely for parents and childless adults, they also vary for children and pregnant women. For children in expansion states, median eligibility is at 305 percent of the federal poverty level, and for children in non-expansion states, eligibility is at 215 percent of the federal poverty level. For pregnant women in expansion states, median eligibility is at 213 percent of the federal poverty level, compared to median eligibility of 200 percent of the federal poverty level for pregnant women in non-expansion states.

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