Feds encourage work requirement in Medicaid for able-bodied adults

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Without Congressional authorization, the Trump Administration announced that states may start conditioning Medicaid edibility on meeting work requirements, which would create serious issues in the State.

Aides to Gov. Bevin estimated that roughly half of 350,000 Kentucky Medicaid recipients already meet the new Medicaid requirements to work at least 80 hours per month, volunteer, or commit to job training.

The Department of Healthcare and Family Services, which runs Medicaid in IL, says it is looking at the rule change implications in the state.

Yesterday, health care advocates in North Carolina and across the USA were officially alerted to yet another fight to ensure that people retain health coverage and access to care. The guidance cites research that it says demonstrates people who work tend to have higher incomes associated with longer life spans, while those who are unemployed are more prone to depression, "poorer general health", and even death. But other times he admits the real reason for the waiver: to force people he sees as freeloaders to work for something he thinks they don't deserve. Those generally include requirements for recipients to be working, be looking for work, volunteering or in school. Advocates for low-income people say they expect Kentucky's waiver to be approved shortly. "Keeping up with the reporting requirements alone will be enough of a burden on people who have two or three part-time jobs that they'll either lose coverage at some point or may decide it's not worth enrolling to begin with".

"With the approval of the Medicaid waiver, the historic progress Kentucky has achieved in health care in recent years comes to a halt", said Dustin Pugel, a policy analyst with the Kentucky Center for Economic Policy.

The coverage gains have also driven major increases in the share of poor state residents getting recommended medical care and a decline in the number who are putting off care because of cost.

In addition, Neale said, researchers have found "strong evidence that unemployment is generally harmful to health", while employment tends to improve "general mental health". "In a state where 443,000 people benefited from Medicaid expansion since past year, this will be devastating for the people of the Commonwealth".

Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham sent the following letter to Governor Martinez requesting that she refrain from filing a request with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) to impose work requirements on Medicaid beneficiaries throughout New Mexico. South Dakota's governor said in his State of the State address Tuesday that he would also look to require certain recipients to work.

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In contrast with those of other advanced industrial democracies, especially in Europe, the US system of social insurance and income support distributes benefits based not only on membership in society, but also on work effort, past and present.

Second, Myers said he's reassured by the fact that CMS said a large portion of the Medicaid population-such as those who are medically frail, pregnant or disabled-should be exempt from work or other "community engagement" requirements.

While Corcoran said the House won't move ahead with the idea this year, the Republican-led chamber considered it last year.

When government handouts go to layabouts, it's not surprising that some people get angry.

Verma stressed that the administration is providing an option for states to require work, not making it mandatory across the country.

Ten states have asked for approval for demonstration projects that included work or other requirements, the agency said.

And people on Medicaid often deal with crises - they may move a lot, or change phone numbers, which makes it hard to keep track of paperwork.

In his State of the State address Tuesday, Gov. Phil Bryant of MS, a Republican, said he supported a "workforce requirement" for able-bodied adults on Medicaid.

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