The booming U.S. economy appears to be reducing dependence on federal health insurance for the poor.
Medicaid enrollment fell for the first time since 2007, declining by about 0.6 percent in fiscal year 2018, and states don’t expect to see much growth in enrollment next year, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation report released Thursday.
States are budgeting for a “minimal” increase of 0.9 percent in 2019, Kaiser said in its annual 50-state survey of Medicaid.
“States largely attribute the enrollment slowdown to a strengthening economy, resulting in fewer new low-income people qualifying for Medicaid,” said Kaiser, a nonprofit group that focuses on health care and health policy.
While crediting the strong economic growth during the Trump presidency, the report also pointed out that the administration is urging states to “add work requirements to Medicaid that are likely to result in enrollment declines.” Some of the work requirements approved by the administration have resulted in some Medicaid recipients losing coverage.
I would love to see the Republicans, or Democrats for that matter, run on the issue of imposing stricter work requirements for Medicaid and welfare. In an age of sub-3% unemployment, there is no excuse for every able-bodied person to not be working.