2018 MIDTERM ELECTION

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Pennsylvania: ACA Medicaid expansion reaches 439K, 73% of total eligible

When I last checked in on Pennsylvania's year-late-but-certainly-welcome addition to the ACA Medicaid expansion club, newly inaugurated Governor Tom Wolf was in the process of replacing his predecessor's poorly-conceived, overly-complicated "Conservative version" of the expansion program with "official" Medicaid expansion to up to 600,000 state residents. At the time (early May), they had hit roughly 250,000 people.

I'm happy to report that according to today's Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the dust has settled on the transition, and enrollment has been on a tear, with the tally now standing at roughly 439,000 Pennsylvanians.

About 439,000 Pennsylvanians have enrolled in expanded Medicaid, which provides health insurance coverage to the poor and disabled, since the beginning of the year, according to figures released last week by the state’s Department of Human Services.

Shortly after taking office earlier this year, Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf announced he would scrap the Medicaid alternative briefly enacted by his predecessor and fully expand Medicaid, as permitted under the Affordable Care Act. The more than 100,000 people who had signed up for Republican Gov. Tom Corbett’s Healthy PA plan are being transitioned into Medicaid coverage.

The expansion covers Pennsylvanians age 19 to 64 with incomes up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level. The state had estimated prior to the expansion that up to 600,000 people would be eligible for the coverage.

This news out of PA (Medicaid enrollment jumping up 189K over the past 2.5 months) is one of the reasons why I'm quite confident that the net increase in Medicaid enrollment over October 2013 nationally is well over 13 million by now even though the last official report (through the end of March) had it at 12.2 million.