April 09, 2021
News: American Rescue Plan Can Expand Medicaid in States That Have Refused Funds
The newly enacted American Rescue Plan is dramatically shifting the debate in several states that have refused federal funding to expand Medicaid through the Affordable Care Act. The new law includes additional funding for two years for new states that adopt Medicaid expansion for the first time.
Florida Alliance Recording Secretary Barbara DeVane highlighted this aspect of the law during a virtual event with Rep. Kathy Castor, Alliance members, and allies from the Lower Drug Prices Now coalition on Monday.
Florida is one of twelve states that have so far refused to take up the federal government’s Medicaid funding offer. Last week, Republicans and Democrats in the Wyoming House joined together to pass expansion of the program but that effort was blocked in the state senate.
Officials in other states have also raised the possibility of accepting the federal funding to expand Medicaid. Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey’s office said she is “open to the discussion,” and there is fresh movement among some Republicans in states including North Carolina and Texas.
“Seventy-six percent of registered voters in Florida support expanding Medicaid, including 69% of Republicans,” said Joseph Peters, Jr., Secretary-Treasurer of the Alliance. “All Americans should have access to high quality, affordable health insurance, and it is time for these 12 states to make this available to their residents.”