Medicaid expansion

Medicaid expansion is one way the Affordable Care Act extends health insurance coverage and allows more people to access and pay for their health care costs. Each state decides whether or not they want to expand Medicaid with financial help from the federal government. Thirty-nine states (including the District of Columbia) have expanded Medicaid. States were given an incentive to expand Medicaid in that the amount of money the federal government pays for the expansion population is more generous that what the state receives for the population previously eligible. 

In states with expanded Medicaid programs, you must earn less than 138% of the federal poverty level to qualify. In states that have not opted to expand, the maximum income is generally much lower, particularly for adults without children and fewer people are eligible for Medicaid benefits.

The Federal Poverty Level changes each year. To find out where your income falls based on the Federal Poverty Level, click here.


WebMD Medical Reference Reviewed by Sarah Goodell on June 21, 2021


SOURCES: Federal Register. Kaiser Family Foundation. 

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