END OF 2018 OPEN ENROLLMENT PERIOD (42 states)

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California: More Evidence that my Medicaid revamp is accurate

Hat Tip To: 
Ruth 37

When I posted my big Medicaid/CHIP spreadsheet overhaul, I was understandably concerned that I missed something major--that there had to be some factor lost in the messy, semi-overlapping reports from HHS and CMS that would account for big swaths of the 1.7 million "extra" Medicaid enrollments that I've "found" (in reality, those 1.7 million have been gradually accruing ever since the beginning of October, I just wasn't able to pin them down into a tangible format on the spreadsheet & graph until now). As a case in point, after the overhaul, I have California sitting at 1.214 million new additions to Medicaid/CHIP programs.

Today a friend provided a link to a story out of the Fresno Bee from 4 days ago, in which the Cailifornia Dept. of Health Care Services reveals that enrollments in Medi-Cal (CA's implementation of Medicaid) have gone up from 8 million people last year up to about 9.2 million as of now...a difference of about 1.2 million.

I'm not saying that there aren't flaws in my methodology; no doubt there are, but this certainly helps set my mind more at ease.

"Medi-Cal is huge. In previous columns, I described it as serving more than 8 million Californians. That was so 2013. Under Obamacare, Medi-Cal broadened its eligibility on Jan. 1, opening the program to more Californians, including childless adults, who previously were ineligible.

"How many people have enrolled so far under the expansion? The state Department of Health Care Services, which administers Medi-Cal, hasn't been terribly forthcoming with the answer. But it did say this when I asked: "Current Medi-Cal enrollment is nearly 9.2 million."