- More than 600,000 military veterans are likely to be without health coverage next year unless more states expand income eligibility for the Medicaid program, researchers at the Urban Institute reported Wednesday.
Of 327,000 uninsured vets in non-expansion states, only 39 percent currently qualify for Medicaid or subsidized marketplace coverage. Seventy-seven percent would qualify if those states expanded Medicaid under the ACA, according to the report funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
“There is a tendency to think that all veterans get health coverage through the VA, which is far from the case,” said a statement from Kathy Hempstead, of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. “While the coverage situation for vets has improved a great deal, hundreds of thousands of veterans remain uninsured, many of whom would be eligible if their states expanded Medicaid.”
Amazingly, seventy percent of 277,000 uninsured vets in expansion states – nearly 194,000 veterans - are already eligible for Medicaid or subsidies to help them buy coverage through the insurance marketplace.
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The report notes the need for better outreach to find and enroll these people in coverage.