600,000 would be kicked off Medicaid under work requirement proposal: CBO

House Republicans' Medicaid work requirement proposal would result in an estimated 600,000 people losing coverage, the Congressional Budget Office said in an April 25 report.

The proposal was included in House Republicans' bill to raise the debt ceiling into next year. Under the proposal, Medicaid beneficiaries must work, volunteer or be part of a work program for 80 hours per month or participate in some combination of those activities. Those rules would affect beneficiaries ages 19 to 56. It includes exceptions for pregnant women, parents and caregivers, as well as those who are physically or mentally unable to work, as determined by a physician. 

The CBO estimated that, if enacted, the work requirements would save the federal government $109 billion over a 10-year period. It estimated that about 15 million people could be subject to the requirements each year but noted that many of those people would qualify for an exemption. 

The proposal allows states to keep those who do not comply with work requirements enrolled in the program, but those states would take on the full cost of coverage for those enrollees.

The proposal is not expected to pass the Democratic-controlled Senate.

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