Legislation would create new federal insurance option for people in states without Medicaid expansion
WASHINGTON — In response to Sen. Raphael Warnock’s (D-Ga.) introduction of the Medicaid Saves Lives Act, which would provide access to health coverage for millions of people in the 12 states that have not yet fully implemented the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion, Health Care for America Now Executive Director Margarida Jorge released the following statement
“Because of partisan opposition to the Affordable Care Act and Medicaid in 12 states, millions of Americans are trapped in a ‘coverage gap,’ where they can’t afford private coverage but they also can’t access Medicaid. Sen. Warnock’s ‘Medicaid Saves Lives Act’ would finally give the more than 2 million Americans currently in the ‘coverage gap’ a fair opportunity to get the healthcare they need.
“Federal action to end the ‘coverage gap’ is long overdue. Despite the American Rescue Plan’s additional federal funding for states to expand Medicaid during the pandemic, lawmakers in a dozen states have still failed to make Medicaid expansion a reality. Two-thirds of people in the ‘coverage gap’ are low-wage workers and the same proportion are people of color, making this both a healthcare issue and a crucial racial equity issue.
“No matter where people live, what they look like or how much money they have, everyone should have access to quality, affordable healthcare they need to take care of themselves and their families. Our country can’t ‘build back better’ while leaving millions of people uninsured. President Biden and Congress have the power to fix the problem, extend coverage and finally give these Americans the opportunity to get the healthcare they need–they should act now.”