Medicaid covers more than 70 million low-income children, adults, disabled and elderly Americans, along with many of those battling addiction, and on Tuesday (May 23), Trump’s new budget plan is expected to include a $800 billion reduction to the insurance option.
Although this is an extremely alarming number, its effect is not going to be felt all at once. The impact will be rippled over the course of 10 years. While this is not as bad as experiencing the multi-billion dollar cut in one wave, if spread evenly over the course of 10 years, that still leaves the medicaid program with $80 billion less funding per year.
The new budget plan, updated from the partial plan published in March, will assume the current GOP health care bill if it passes the Senate and becomes law.
The nationally-opposed health care bill will stop the planned expansion of the Medicaid program, which was set to see light by 2020, while also reducing federal funding for the entire program (hence the alleged astronomic cut the current administration will propose tomorrow). This will place the sole financial responsibility of the program on the backs of the states.
The Congressional Budget Office predicted that, under the proposed GOP health care bill, the federal government will cut its more than 60 percent share of the Medicaid funding by 25 percent, while 14 million enrollees will lose coverage. Both of these projections are for the year 2026.
Considering that the Medicaid expansion, under the Affordable Care Act, could “significantly increase coverage rates for these groups and help reduce longstanding disparities in coverage,” it seems that the current administration is taking drastic measures to debilitate the program before it is given the chance to cover Latinos, blacks, and American Indians/Alaska natives.
The fate of the House-passed GOP health care bill seems to be the only hope left for a progressive health care system under the current administration.
UPDATE: 5/23/17 2:03 PM EST
The official budget plan has been released with the Trump administration will be cutting more than $1 trillion from social programs.
Mic reports the predicted cuts in the Medicaid program remain true with a proposed $616 billion in Medicaid and children’s health insurance program over a ten year duration, while an approximate $200 billion will be cut from food stamps.
Trump’s budget plan also includes a $72 billion cut in programs for disabled Americans and cutting $50 billion from agriculture subsidies. The final cut in social programs regards student loans. This specific portion will cut nearly $115.8 billion between consolidating student loan repayment plans ($76 billion), in addition to terminating both, subsidized student loans ($39 billion) and Public Service Loan Forgiveness ($859 million).
Once again, Medicaid cuts will only be possible with Trump’s American Health Care Act becoming law. The proposed budget plan will now have to go before Congress.