While millions of adults are gaining Medicaid coverage next year under the federal health law, more than 150,000 people anticipate losing coverage in the state-federal health insurance program for the poor. States are finding ways around the requirement and ultimately looking to cut back, designing products that were never intended for lower-income individuals. Currently four states– Maine, Rhode Island, Vermont and Wisconsin– are planning to reduce eligibility. Most people losing Medicaid will be eligible for federal subsidies to purchase private coverage but some will not be granted these benefits. While this is a program meant to expand health coverage to low income citizens, it unintentionally leaves some of the most vulnerable citizens, now insured by Medicaid, uninsured. Benefits, premiums and cost sharing could all be different under this new system.
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