The COVID-19 pandemic is poised to drastically alter the Medicaid program. While state Medicaid programs are currently expanding coverage policies and enrollment to address acute public health needs, states will soon face significant budget shortfalls. These impending changes may renew partisan debates about restrictive policies like work requirements, which generally require beneficiaries to verify their participation in certain activities—such as employment, job search, or training programs—in order to receive or retain coverage. We argue that restrictive Medicaid policies are driven, to a great extent, by political party affiliation, highlighting the outsized role of partisanship in Medicaid policy adoption. To combat these dynamics, additional efforts are needed to improve community-informed decision-making, strengthen evaluation approaches to tie evidence to policymaking, and boost participation in and understanding of the political processes that affect policy change.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine