Georgia's Medicaid work requirement program slow to gain participants

The nation's only Medicaid program that requires proof of work to receive benefits is off to a slow start, the Georgia Recorder reported Oct. 21. 

As of Oct. 13 — just over three months since the program's launch — 1,343 people have enrolled in the partial Medicaid expansion program, according to the report. That comes after 265 people signed up for coverage in the program's first month. 

The program launched July 1 and partially expands Medicaid coverage, but enrollees earning less than $14,580 annually — with some exceptions — must complete 80 hours of work, job training, education or community service per month to receive coverage. 

The state planned for about 100,000 people to enroll in the first year of the program and as many as 370,000 could be eligible, according to the report. 

Georgia's program is being monitored nationally as other states eye Medicaid work requirements. Nationally, House Republicans included Medicaid work requirements in a bill to raise the debt ceiling, but those requirements did not make the final deal. 

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