October 2015

The Private Option: Health Insurance for Working Arkansas Residents

In 2014, Arkansas accepted federal funds to provide health insurance to more low-income residents through the private option. The private option gives Arkansas residents with incomes below 138 percent of the federal poverty level ($27,720 for a family of three in 2015) the chance to enroll in affordable health insurance. Our analysis finds that 58 percent of those who stand to gain health coverage through the private option are working.

September 3, 2015

Persuading States to Suspend Medicaid for Incarcerated Individuals

Elizabeth Hagan

Associate Director of Coverage Initiatives

Nygel Williams

Villers Fellow

With a majority of states expanding Medicaid, many more people stand to benefit, including people recently released from incarceration. States are re-evaluating their policies regarding the Medicaid coverage of incarcerated residents. Here we explain why states should adopt policies that make it easier to keep the justice-involved population enrolled in coverage and offer ideas for working with your state to implement those policies.

July 17, 2015

Alaska Expands Medicaid: Is Utah Next?

Patrick Willard, Families USA’s Health Action Director, responds to the good news that Governor Bill Walker will take executive action to expand Medicaid in Alaska. Now, all eyes are on Utah to extend health coverage to its moderate- and low-income residents.

July 14, 2015

Tackling Health Care Challenges in the States: Legislative Roundup

Patrick Willard

Senior Director of Campaigns, Outreach, and Engagement (CORE)

While Congress wrestles with budget reconciliation and takes another swipe at the Affordable Care Act, most state lawmakers are back at their day jobs and finished with legislative business for the year. The 2015 sessions produced a few highlights, and some lowlights, for health care advocates. Lawmakers continued to grapple with full implementation of the ACA, but some looked beyond the health care law to move their states toward a health reform 2.0 agenda. Below we note some of the significant work this year in state capitals.

May 28, 2015

Congress’s Budget Proposes Significant Cuts to Health Care Programs

Shannon Attanasio

Senior Director of Government Affairs

Earlier this month Congress agreed on a budget that should worry consumer health care advocates. It proposes slashing Medicaid spending and makes other changes that threaten low-income consumers’ access to health care. Expect a busy summer as committees debate these measures.

May 27, 2015

Debunking Medicaid Critics: Facts on Health Care Quality and Access

Elizabeth Cooper

Emerson Fellow
What was once a promise is now a reality: Since the Affordable Care Act became law, 16 million Americans have gained health insurance. Now, opponents of the ACA are changing tack, criticizing the quality of that health insurance. Lately, conservatives have been attacking Medicaid, rallying around the myth that Medicaid coverage is no better than being uninsured.
Short Analysis
May 2015

Explainer: Medicaid Uncompensated Care Pools

What are uncompensated care pools (also known as a “low-income pool” in Florida)? And why are they getting attention now? This short analysis explains what these pools are and how they relate to the CMS process of approving Medicaid Section 1115 waivers. 

April 29, 2015

Medicaid Expansion in Kentucky: Anthony’s Story

On April 29, Families USA released a report that profiles two residents in neighboring states: Iowa, which chose to accept federal funds to extend health coverage to more adults through Medicaid, and Missouri, which has rejected federal funds to do the same. Our report shows how a state’s choice to extend health coverage can make a real difference in people’s lives. It also shows that if a state chooses not to extend coverage, that choice is not only a great injustice—it threatens access to care for Americans who need affordable, quality health care.


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