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Health Care

Medicaid an Obamacare Success Story

The number of applications for Medicaid has increased under the Affordable Care Act, although the difference has been more substantial in states that have decided to expand Medicaid.(Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

photo of Sophie Novack
December 3, 2013

A new report released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Tuesday shows that more than 1.46 million people were determined in October to be eligible to enroll in Medicaid or the Children's Health Insurance Program.

The number of applications for Medicaid has increased under the Affordable Care Act, although the difference has been more substantial in states that have decided to expand Medicaid. The law calls for an expansion of Medicaid to people with incomes of up to 133 percent of the federal poverty line in 2014. The Supreme Court left the decision to opt in or out up to the states, and a number of Republican governors chose not to expand.

Twenty-five states plus D.C. are currently planning to expand Medicaid. The October report counts 23 states plus D.C. as participating, since Ohio and Michigan decided to opt in more recently.

 

In states that are not expanding Medicaid, applications to Medicaid and CHIP agencies increased 4.1 percent in October over the previous few months, and the total number of individuals determined to be eligible for Medicaid or CHIP was 697,019. In states that are expanding Medicaid, applications jumped 15.5 percent, and 757,991 new eligibility determinations were made. The overall total across all states was an 8.6 percent increase in applications and 1,460,367 new eligibility determinations.

Although the increase in applications was higher in states expanding Medicaid, the insurance requirement and coverage of the law in general has prompted a number of uninsured but eligible individuals to apply for Medicaid coverage.

The report released Tuesday is the first in an ongoing series of monthly reports on state Medicaid and CHIP data.

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