Kicked Off Medicaid: Millions At Risk As States Trim Rolls

Posted on 04/28/23 | News Source: Associated Press

Millions are expected to be left without insurance after getting a reprieve for the past three years during the coronavirus pandemic, when the federal government barred states from removing anyone who was deemed ineligible.

Days out from a surgery and with a young son undergoing chemotherapy, Kyle McHenry was scrambling to figure out if his Florida family will still be covered by Medicaid come Monday.

One form on the state’s website said coverage for their sick 5-year-old son, Ryder, had been denied. But another said the family would remain on Medicaid through next year. Still, a letter from the state said McHenry now makes too much money for him, his wife and their older son to qualify after the end of the month.

Three phone calls and a total of six frustrating hours on hold with Florida’s Department of Children and Families later, the McHenrys finally got the answer they were dreading on Thursday: Most of the family is losing Medicaid coverage, although Ryder remains eligible because of his illness.

“I’m trying not to go into panic,” McHenry’s wife, Allie McHenry, told The Associated Press earlier in the week. The state agency did not respond to AP’s request for comment.

The McHenrys are among the first casualties in an unprecedented nationwide review of the 84 million Medicaid enrollees over the next year that will require states to remove people whose incomes are now too high for the federal-state program offered to the poorest Americans.