Utah ranks lowest among Medicaid expansion states for health insurance for low-income children in 2021 – State of Reform

Latest data from US Census Bureau’s American Community Survey shows that 84% of low-income children eligible for Medicaid in 2021 in Utah are not enrolled. That is the highest rate in the country among the 36 states that have expanded Medicaid. It’s also higher than Wyoming, which is a less developed state with more restrictions.

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Utah also had the third highest number of children from low-income families uninsured at 15% or 42,000 children.

“Utah has the highest number of children who are eligible for treatment but are not registered in the United States,” said Emily Zheutlin, Health Policy Analyst for the United States. Utah Health Policy Project.

“Unfortunately, this has been happening for years, even before the epidemic. More work needs to be done to empower these children and it is time for the Utah legislature to act. The 2023 session will be critical to achieving 100% of all children in Utah. Learning study after study shows that pediatric health care not only improves children’s health, but also promotes academic achievement, good health, and more throughout life.”

Currently, Utah has the highest rate (77.8%) of insurance policy among developed countries with insurance premiums much lower than the national average.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Utah’s unemployment rate (2.7%) was significantly lower than the national average. The total cost of health insurance per member per month in Utah was also lower compared to an average of $386 in 2020, according to the last state report. health insurance market report. The Census Bureau reports that the number of Utahns supported by employers is an economic burden.

By January 2022, Medicaid enrollment in Utah grew by 114,199 registrants, and 31,025 of the adults who registered are parents.

The massive enrollment was largely due to the ongoing passage of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which prohibits state Medicaid agencies from enrolling beneficiaries during a public health emergency (PHE).

President Biden soon announced the end to the pandemic and its management has indicated that PHE’s relief will last until January 2023.

Voices for Utah Children, non-profit to strengthen security for all children in the state, they have asked Utah’s Medicaid program to establish a 12-month continuous coverage plan.

“Utah’s children’s uninsured rate proves why it is so important for us to follow state policies to ensure that all children have access to health care,” the agency said.

“We’ve been watching the steady decline and decline in the number of people who spread it for years. We need to pass legislation to ensure that all Utah children have access to CHIP and Medicaid, and that we have 12 months of continuous coverage. These policies can help us reduce the risk.” of Utah’s uninsured and help prevent further loss and disruption after this Public Health Emergency is over.

The organization has asked the government to take action to help the affected people and the census so that families can get help that suits their needs.

Among the children expected to lose Medicaid benefits nationwide when it ends, the Urban Institute comparison 57% will be eligible for the Child Insurance Program, and another 9% will be eligible for the Marketplace and tax credits.

The one-third of people who will lose Medicaid coverage after the end of PHE may have access to individual financial assistance in the marketplaces as tax credits that can be passed on to families as additional taxes. in the American Rescue Plan Act they are made permanent.

The agency cited the need for better coordination between the Marketplace and the Medicaid agency in each state to reduce the unnecessary loss of health care after PHE.