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The Hill (Washington, DC)

Report: GOP Overhaul Could Cut Medicaid Enrollment by Up to 44 Million

Julian Pecquet

Almost 44 million fewer Americans would be eligible for Medicaid in 2021 if House Republicans' budget blueprint becomes law under the most dire scenario projected by the non-partisan Kaiser Family Foundation.

A new report tallies the deep cuts that states would make if the program was replaced with block grants and the number of people projected to become eligible for Medicaid under the healthcare reform law, which Republicans want to repeal. The worst scenario would leave 32.1 million people eligible for Medicaid, versus 75.9 million under current law.

The report concludes that the Republican proposal would strain state budgets while leaving millions uninsured.

"The House Budget Plan would result in federal budget savings and more predictable federal financing for Medicaid in the future," says a summary of the report. "In exchange, the plan would make fundamental changes to the financing structure of Medicaid that would substantially reduce federal payments to states, challenging states' ability to finance coverage for their low-income residents.

"This reduction could result in large reductions in payments to providers and enrollment. In turn, these reductions would likely worsen the problem of the uninsured and strain the nation's safety net. To avoid such cuts, states would need to increase their own spending."

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