Did Maine accept the Medicaid Expansion?

LOOKING FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION?

“What is the expansion of Medicaid in Maine?” and, “How can I get an Affordable Care Act Medicaid application?” are questions Medicaid applicants have when they first learn about the expansion of the program. The Affordable Care Act Medicaid expansion was first offered to all states in the early 2010s. The ACA Medicaid expansion was not a required program, and each state was given the option to adopt the expansion. The program’s main goal is to keep many people in good health by offering benefits to more people. If widely adopted, millions of Americans could be eligible for the program.

If a state does not want to adopt the Medicaid expansion plan, no changes will be made to its Medicaid program. However, if a state chooses to move forward with the expansion, the Obamacare Medicaid expansion details will make that state change its Medicaid qualifications. The Affordable Care Act Medicaid eligibility requirements will broaden the scope of the Medicaid program by making income the main factor to be used to assess if a candidate qualifies for Medicaid coverage or not. The income requirements will make it so those who have incomes up to 133 percent of the federal poverty level will be able to be enrolled. Also, anyone who has been in foster care will be allowed to stay enrolled in Medicaid until they are 26 years old. To learn whether Maine has adopted the expansion program, read the sections below.

ACA Medicaid Expansion in Maine

Before you can get the answer to, “What is the Obamacare Medicaid expansion?” you first must know how lawmakers make their decisions about the expansion of Medicaid coverage. State officials must look at the possible positive and negative outcomes of accepting the expansion before they can make a decision. The ACA Medicaid expansion cost to states is one the biggest drawbacks to the program. States that accept the expansion do get federal funding for the program, yet, it does not mean the states will not have to fund parts of the program. In a decade’s time, the Obamacare expansion could cost each state several billion dollars. For some states, the ACA Medicaid cost is too much for the budget.

Thirty-one states and the District of Columbia voted in favor of the expansion of Medicaid; Maine is not of one them. The cost and lack of state control that comes with the program are just two of the reasons Maine officials have not moved forward with the expansion. Download our free guide to read more information about the different state decisions regarding the ACA expansion.

What does opting out of the Affordable Care Act Medicaid expansion mean for Maine?

Since the Maine Affordable Care Act expansion of Medicaid was not signed into law, nothing has changed for the Medicaid program in Maine. Low-income families can still learn how to apply for coverage, as well as senior citizens and those who have disabilities. The new ACA Medicaid eligibility standards have not been put in place. This means that childless adults who earn low incomes cannot receive assistance from the Maine Medicaid program. Some of the states that have instituted the expansion have seen a growth in their economies and decreases in uninsured people. However, there could be financial problems with the ACA expansion of Medicaid if the states do not have enough money in their budgets to keep the program running. The states who accepted the expansion may be left having to pay for the entire expansion program if the federal government votes to repeal the ACA expansion plan across the country. However, the federal government has not yet changed the terms of the expansion plan.

The Affordable Care Act expansion has only been in effect for a few years, and it is not completely certain how it will affect Medicaid-expanded states and the country in the long run.

Will Maine ever expand its Medicaid program?

While Maine lawmakers have remained hesitant to adopt the Obamacare expansion of Medicaid in their state, the expansion is on the ballot for the Fall 2017 election. Depending on the way the voters feel about the expansion, there is a chance the program could be coming to Maine. In the meantime, you can submit the Maine Medicaid application to receive benefits from the program (called MaineCare locally). Be sure to go over the Medicaid eligibility requirements before applying.

Note that if you are denied Medicaid benefits, there may be other actions you can take to get medical benefits. You do not have to be Medicaid-eligible to apply for certain health programs that are not funded by Medicaid.

To learn more about the Medicaid expansion, download this complimentary guide.