ACA Facts: Medicaid and CHIP Expansion

March 27, 2013

Medicaid and CHIP Expansion

Starting in 2014, new provisions under the Affordable Care Act will promote a simple, seamless system of affordable coverage by coordinating Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) with the Affordable Insurance Exchanges. Medicaid provides coverage for people with lower incomes, older people, people with disabilities, and some families and children. The ACA will expand the Medicaid program to cover people under age 65, including people with disabilities, with incomes up to 133% of the federal poverty level (estimated to be about $15,000 for a single individual and higher incomes for couples and families with children). In addition to helping low-income adults with disabilities who don't meet the disability requirements of the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program, the expansion also helps individuals whose income is above their state's current eligibility levels. Furthermore, coverage for children under the ACA will expand both through Medicaid and CHIP. CHIP is a state and federal partnership program that works closely with Medicaid within each state to provide low-cost health insurance coverage for children in families who earn too much income to qualify for Medicaid but can't afford to purchase private health insurance. To reduce the burden on states, the Federal government will pay 100% of the cost of the expansions in the beginning but gradually reduce its contribution over time.