Section 50
Chapter 49,553

Medicaid: Medicaid: eligibility--2005. End of Year Issue Brief

Johnson, P.

Issue Brief 2005: 1-15


PMID: 16710917
Accession: 049552355

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Medicaid, a joint federal-state program started in 1965 as Title XIX of the Social Security Act, provides health insurance coverage to low-income children, parents meeting specific income thresholds, pregnant women, the elderly and people with disabilities. In 2003, Medicaid provided health care insurance to approximately 40.2 million low-income Americans. That same year, 45 million Americans had no health insurance at all. In order to reduce the number of uninsured people in the United States, state legislators have introduced hundreds of bills over the past decade to expand health insurance coverage to low-income citizens. Health insurance has been extended for low-income children through Medicaid expansions, the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) and other medical assistance programs. States, in partnership with the federal government, have also made it easier for disabled individuals to qualify for Medicaid through Ticket-to-Work legislation (which allows individuals with disabilities to remain in the workforce and keep their Medicaid coverage). They also have expanded coverage for senior citizens, especially for their prescription drug needs through Medicaid Pharmacy Plus waivers. In fact, from 1997 to 2003, monthly Medicaid enrollment rose from 31.2 million to 40.6 million recipients.

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