Kan. Medicaid Rolls, Costs Could Expand Under US House Proposal

Aug 19, 2009

Topeka, KS – Federal health care legislation could expand the Medicaid program, possibly costing states like Kansas more tax dollars.

Medicaid provides health services for more than 200,000 aged, disabled, or low-income Kansans.

Legislation in the U.S. House would raise the maximum income allowed to be eligible for the program.

Andy Allison, Director of the Kansas Health Policy Authority, explained that could affect Kansas more than other states because Kansas has tight income standards for covering some groups.

"Really, it would be an expansion - an extension - of our coverage to groups that are just ineligible right now: those childless adults, young adults, working adults, and even parents above that threshold that we currently cover of thirty percent or less of the poverty level," Allison said.

Thirty percent of the fed poverty level would be an income under $7,000 for a family of four.

Medicaid is funded jointly by the state and federal government.

Most proposals have the federal government picking up a majority, or at least part, of the increased costs.