Noteworthy News

Medicaid Funds Could Pay for Private Insurance

Could enhanced Medicaid funding provided to states under the Affordable Care Act be used to pay for private health insurance for low-income people?

The state of Arkansas has received federal approval for such an approach, which could potentially foster greater continuity of care for low-income individuals and families that move back and forth between private insurance and Medicaid as their employment status changes.  These are often the very types of patients served in large numbers by private urban safety-net hospitals.

What are the issues involved in using federal Medicaid funds in this manner?  Is it even legal?  These questions and others are addressed in Using Medicaid Funds to Buy Qualified Health Plan Coverage for Medicaid Beneficiaries, a recent release from the “Health Reform GPS,” a project of George Washington University’s Hirsh Health Law and Policy Program and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.  Read this policy brief hereiStock_000006556811XSmall.

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