Another state mulls Medicaid work requirements

Idaho is the latest start considering Medicaid work requirements, the Idaho Capital Sun reported Jan. 9. 

Gov. Brad Little's proposed budget shows the state would pursue a work requirement for the Medicaid expansion population, according to the report. 

Details about the proposed policy are slim. The governor's budget chief, Alex Adams, said federal regulators have expressed openness to a work policy, according to the Sun

Georgia is the only state with Medicaid work requirements in place. The program launched July 1 and partially expands Medicaid coverage, but enrollees earning up to $14,580 annually — with some exceptions — must complete 80 hours of work, job training, education or community service per month to receive coverage. That program is off to a slow start, with only 1,800 people signed up for the program as of Dec. 26. Gov. Brian Kemp expected 31,000 Georgians to sign up in the first year. 

Three other states are considering Medicaid work requirements: 

  • Louisiana Gov. Jeff Landry is considering work requirements and copayments for enrollees in the state's Medicaid program. The state previously explored implementing work requirements in 2018, but the proposal was ditched when it appeared such requirements might cost the state more money than it saved.
  • Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly has tried unsuccessfully for years to expand Medicaid in the state and now has introduced a plan that includes work requirements. Under her plan, residents would have to prove they are employed to sign up for services and renew them each year. The state's health secretary would develop exceptions to allow enrollments for full-time students, caretakers, veterans and those with medical conditions. 
  • A pair of South Dakota lawmakers are seeking to put a ballot issue in front of voters in 2024 on whether the state should consider work requirements for those enrolled in the expanded Medicaid program.

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