Six million people in the U.S. have been stripped of Medicaid coverage in the last few months. And the disaster is still going. This is shaping up to be a major healthcare crisis. Researchers are describing this as the largest concentration of health insurance loss in U.S. history.

America remains the only modern state that does not consider healthcare to be a right. For all too many poor Americans, the lack of healthcare has been a life-threatening emergency even before COVID. During COVID, Medicaid was expanded to help the poor.

In December 2022, President Biden and the Democrats approved a budget deal to end this aid on March 31st, 2023. As many as 18 million enrollees were predicted to lose Medicaid coverage according to an analysis from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

And now this grim prediction is on its way to becoming a reality. States across the U.S. have stripped nearly six million people of Medicaid coverage over just the past several months according to KFF's latest data. This purge is happening in both blue and red states. According to KFF, 73% of the people disenrolled from Medicaid so far have lost coverage for procedural reasons—such as a failure to return paperwork on time or jump through other, often confusing, bureaucratic hoops—not because they were deemed ineligible due to their income or other factors.

The Democrats have declared that the public health emergency in America is over when it is definitely not. 150,000 People are still dying each year from Covid 19.

At the start of the pandemic in the U.S., Congress enacted the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA), which included a requirement that Medicaid programs keep people continuously enrolled until the COVID-19 public health emergency ended. Since the start of the pandemic, total Medicaid/CHIP enrollment grew to 90.9 million, an increase of 19.8 million, or more than 27.9% from enrollment in pre-pandemic times. Now this progress is being reversed. And people who have moved since the start of the pandemic, those with limited English proficiency (LEP), and people with disabilities may be at greater risk of losing Medicaid coverage.

This all shows the very important need for national health insurance.

The decision to end the public health emergency and kick millions off Medicaid is a disaster. These people need to be helped.

What makes matters worse is that Republicans unveiled a budget blueprint on September 19th, 2023, that proposes trillions of dollars in federal spending reductions over the next decade, specifically targeting Medicaid and federal nutrition assistance for steep cuts. The Republican proposal would cut federal discretionary spending by nearly $5 trillion over the next decade, (Roll Call). The proposal would gash federal Medicaid spending by close to $2 trillion and SNAP by $800 billion. The resolution also calls for punitive new work requirements for the two programs. This proposal cannot be allowed to pass. Some say it is unlikely to pass, but it is still important not to become complacent on this issue.

Related Articles:

House GOP Unveils Budget With Trillions in Cuts to Medicaid, Food Benefits, and More (Common Dreams, 9-19-23)

Rolling Medicaid Purge Called 'Largest Concentration of Health Insurance Loss' in US History (Common Dreams, 9-8-23)

18 million projected to lose Medicaid coverage at end of COVID-19 emergency (Health Care Dive, 12-6-22)

Biden’s Ending of the Covid Emergency Is a Public Health Disaster (The Nation, 2-2-23)

15 million people may lose Medicaid coverage after COVID-19 PHE ends, says HHS (Healthcare Finance, 8-26-22)

10 Things to Know About the Unwinding of the Medicaid Continuous Enrollment Provision (KFF, 1-11-23)

Path Cleared for Georgia to Launch Work Requirements for Medicaid (KHN, 11-18-22)

States brace for Medicaid spending surge (Axios, 10-26-22)

Medicaid: What to Watch in 2022 (KFF, 1-18-22)



Fix Medicare Now


There is a persistent and growing disparity in the rates paid to health providers by Medicare, Medicaid and commercial insurance.

Medicaid rates have been found to be far below Medicare rates, which are well below commercial rates. Fee for service inpatient hospital base payments in Medicaid were 22 percent below comparable Medicare rates. To narrow or close this gap, many states make supplemental payments to some or all hospitals in their state. However, not all states make supplemental payments, and even in states that make them, not all hospitals receive them. These low Medicaid base payment levels put providers who serve low-income communities at risk. It will be much harder for them to keep afloat, attract employees, and provide quality care. This is also a direct threat to the lives of the people who are supposed to be receiving this care.

How Differences in Medicaid, Medicare, and Commercial Health Insurance Payment Rates Impact Access, Health Equity, and Cost (The Commonwealth Fund, 8-17-22)