A Preventable Loss of Healthcare
When Medicaid pandemic protections expired on April 1, 2023, states were free to redetermine eligibility and terminate families' Medicaid for the first time since February 2020.
Six months later, coverage for millions of Medicaid recipients has been has been terminated - many for administrative reasons. Communities of color are bearing the brunt of these terminations. At least 54% of the beneficiaries who have lost Medicaid are people of color, including no fewer than 2 million Latinos; 1.4 million African Americans; 300,000 Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders; and 100,000 Native Americans.
Before states began removing people from their Medicaid rosters, leading national civil rights organizations warned that historic Medicaid losses could devastate communities of color. After six months of Medicaid unwinding, the results are far worse than expected.
It has become clear that states' elected leaders must make major new commitments to prevent millions of children, families, older adults, and others from losing Medicaid because of nothing more than missing paperwork. Here's the methodology behind the scores for how states are handling Medicaid disenrollments currently.
Georgia's Grade: F -
Governor Brian Kemp is only committing to fund Medicaid for about 100k people in Georgia, when there are about 450k people still uninsured. This leaves a large amount of Georgians underinsured and unprotected.
Hawaii's Grade: A
Governor Josh Green has adopted Medicaid Expansion, voluntarily paused procedural, and is now working towards a comprehensive and accurate automatic renewal process - a move of equity for Hawaiians.
North Carolina's Grade: F
Though Governor Roy Cooper recently adopted Medicaid expansion that goes into effect December 1, the state has not stopped Medicaid unenrollments and is not actively working towards a comprehensive and accurate automatic renewal process.
email your governor: advocate for eligible families
Over 10 million people have lost health coverage - a preventable health equity disaster. About 3 out of every 4 people who lost health coverage may still be eligible but were terminated for "red-tape" reasons, such as an email going to spam, a letter being lost in the mail, long call center hold times, or other administrative reasons.
Last year, we warned Congress to take immediate action and prevent millions of families from losing health coverage when Medicaid enrollment returned to the pre-pandemic process.
Unfortunately, millions of people living in one of the richest countries in the world still don't have sufficient healthcare coverage or access to an affordable healthcare plan.
We demand our policy leaders reset the Medicaid enrollment process. Eligible families should not lose coverage because of a broken Medicaid enrollment system.
Medicaid is one of the major pathways that ensures that all people have access to high-quality, affordable healthcare coverage. Failure to expand Medicaid and address coverage gaps is disproportionately harming people of color, further exacerbating existing health disparities. View the toolkit to learn how to take action on keeping eligible families covered in your own community.
Enhance Enforcement by the Administration
Further enforcement actions may be needed as the level of supplemental Consolidated Appropriations Act funding declines, and the share of Medicaid costs paid by states rises. Many states will do everything they can to retain eligible residents' coverage, but others may not. If anything, the administration may be required to redouble its enforcement efforts to shield eligible Medicaid families from needless procedural terminations in the coming months.
Protect Eligible Families, Hold Procedural Terminations
To prevent procedural terminations, we urge states to focus on administrative burdens. For many families, it is not realistic to expect that they will learn the full details of their situation, determine the precise steps they must take to retain or restore coverage and take such steps on their own in time to prevent termination. Millions of overburdened and under-resourced families will be left behind unless states squarely address the unmanageable administrative burdens such families face.
People Over Procedures: Prioritize Healthcare for Families
On their own, with or without federal intervention, states should combat the epidemic of procedural termination by taking two steps: doing everything possible to renew eligibility based on data matches, including by renewing families whenever the SNAP program has already found them to have income low enough to qualify for Medicaid; and using multiple channels provide overburdened and under-resourced families with the help they need to retain health care, in the face of a redetermination process that far too many families find chaotic and unmanageable. Until such efforts have succeeded in cutting procedural terminations to a minimum level,
Your Medicaid Story Matters
We want to share the real-life stories of those impacted by this current health coverage crisis. Medicaid is one of the major reasons low-income adults, children, pregnant women, seniors, and people with disabilities have access to high-quality, affordable healthcare coverage. This is more than a policy; it is about everyday people.
Help others understand the impact of this historic health coverage crisis by sharing your story.