Medicaid Expansion in Florida

Medicaid Expansion in Florida has not happened and does not look likely to happen at this writing. Some states expanded their Medicaid programs under the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) to cover all people with household incomes below a certain level. Two years ago, the Florida Senate approved a Medicaid expansion plan, but it was rejected by Governor Rick Scott and the State House.

Regardless of state Medicaid expansion, to qualify for the Florida Medicaid benefit program, you must be:

• A resident of Florida;
• A U.S. national, citizen, permanent resident, or legal alien;
• In need of health care/insurance assistance;
• Whose financial situation would be characterized as low income or very low income; and
• Be age 65 or older.

Medicaid Expansion in Florida Costs The State Money

As of July 2017, Florida is one of 19 states that haven’t expanded Medicaid.

Families USA explained that Florida’s decision not to expand Medicaid means about 1.25 million Floridians don’t qualify for Medicaid, even though their incomes are under 138% of the poverty level.

According to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Urban Institute, Florida’s economy is negatively impacted by not Medicaid expansion in Florida. The state was projected to lose out on $66.1 billion in Medicaid funding (more than any other state) over the decade starting in 2014 because it isn’t expanding Medicaid. But that’s based on the assumption that the ACA (ObamaCare)—including Medicaid at the currently-scheduled federal funding level—would still be in in effect. Any new legislation implemented under President Trump may affect that program.

The Repeal of ObamaCare: What is the Cost to Florida

Florida stands to lose more than it gains under the proposed the American Health Care Act, which has a spending limit or per capita caps for each person enrolled in Medicaid beginning in 2019, with annual adjustments for medical inflation. Anything spent above the cap, the state would have to cover. With Florida’s spending for Medicaid at or near the bottom of all states, its spending cap will most likely to be lower than the national average.

In addition, the rate of Medicaid enrollment in Florida among disabled persons and low-income seniors, who are the most expensive populations to cover under the program, has increased more quickly than national averages over the past decade. From 2006 to 2015, Florida’s low-income elderly population, seniors who earn less than $24,000 a year for an individual or $32,000 a year for a two-person household, increased 25% compared to the national average of 14%. Plus, the rate of Floridians who qualify for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) also has been higher than the rest of the nation by 35%. The national average is just 17% (SSI beneficiaries are automatically eligible for Medicaid).

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If you have questions about Florida Medicaid, Attorney Frazier is a skilled Medicaid planning (with over 2,000 cases completed that helped preserve their family’s savings), estate planning and elder law practitioner. Please contact Attorney Frazier for a free telephone consultation at 727-586-3306 extension 104. If you prefer click here now to send in a contact form and we will call you.