For Immediate Release
February 18, 2021
Modern Medicaid Alliance Urges Congress to Strengthen Medicaid in COVID-19 Relief Legislation; New Poll Finds Voters Agree
Washington, D.C. – In a letter sent to Congressional leaders today, 46 Modern Medicaid Alliance partners called on Congress to strengthen America’s Medicaid program in upcoming COVID-19 relief legislation. The letter also provides Congress with new polling data showing widespread, bipartisan support among American voters for strengthening Medicaid.
The letter, found here, calls on Congress to “enhance federal financing for Medicaid by increasing states’ Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP) by a total of at least 12 percentage points, consistent with the previous request made by the bipartisan National Governors Association.”
The new polling highlighted in the letter finds 4 in 5 voters (80%) – including 92% of Democrats and 68% of Republicans – believe increasing funding for Medicaid during the COVID-19 crisis should be a priority for Congress. Voters also want to see the new Administration take action on this critical issue, with 75% saying increasing Medicaid funding should be a priority for the Biden-Harris Administration in its first 100 days.
The letter also commends lawmakers’ efforts to “enhance reimbursements for home and community-based services, incentivize non-expansion states to expand Medicaid, and expand postpartum coverage in Medicaid” and strongly encourages Congress to “keep these provisions in the final legislation.”
The number of Americans relying on Medicaid continues to grow due to the COVID-19 crisis, at the same time state revenues have dropped dramatically. From February to September 2020, Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) enrollment has increased by more than 6 million people, or 8.6% nationwide.
The Alliance’s letter goes on to say, “Through December 2022, an additional 5.03-10.25 million people are projected to enroll in the Medicaid program as a result of the economic impact of COVID-19, reinforcing that now is the time to strengthen this vital program.”
Without increased funding for Medicaid amid the COVID-19 crisis, hardworking Americans most at-risk could be denied access to the care they need. According to the letter, Medicaid enrollees such as children, older adults, those in need of mental health and substance use disorder treatment, and people with intellectual and developmental disabilities stand to face devastating consequences absent increased funding for the program.
The Modern Medicaid Alliance includes national and local organizations that represent patients, health care workers, children, older adults, people with disabilities, pregnant and postpartum women, and health insurance providers. The Modern Medicaid Alliance is committed to working with Congress to ensure that together, we overcome the COVID-19 crisis.
About the Modern Medicaid Alliance: The Modern Medicaid Alliance is a partnership between Americans who value Medicaid and leading advocacy organizations. Our mission is to educate policymakers and the public about the benefits of Medicaid to the American people in terms of cost savings, health outcomes, and social impact, and to highlight how Medicaid is innovating in the delivery of care – especially for America’s most vulnerable citizens – and accountability of the program.
For more information on the impact of COVID-19 on Medicaid, visit data.modernmedicaid.org/COVID