In the Valley, we know that prevention and access to health care services is essential for healthy communities. Now it’s clear that the state government agrees. On January 3rd, Governor John Hickenlooper announced plans to expand Medicaid for individuals with annual incomes less than $30,657 for a family of four (or $14,856 for an individual). This expansion will provide coverage to an additional 160,000 adults.
Look at the table below for eligibility information based on family size. Remember, because of expansion eligibility will be increased to 133% of Federal Poverty Level (FPL).
The federal government will cover 100 percent of the costs for the newly-eligible Medicaid population through 2016. In 2017, the federal match rates begin to taper down until 2020, at which point Colorado will be responsible for 10 percent of the costs going forward.
Saving Money With Expanded Coverage
With this expansion, Gov. Hickenlooper hopes Colorado will save more than $280 million in Medicaid spending over 10 years. These savings will come from:
- Enhance value-based health care services like prevention and preventing unnecessary or duplicative services
- Encourage health care organizations to coordinate care better
- Reform payment, rewarding value of care instead of volume of patients seen
- Encourage organizations to upgrade health information technologies (like upgrading computer systems to better track claims and payments)
What does Medicaid cover?
The benefits covered for adults through Medicaid are different for each state. In Colorado, Medicaid covers:
- Doctor visits
- Emergency care
- Hospital care
- Prescription drugs
- Long-term care
- Preventive care for children
To learn more about Medicaid and to find out where you can apply locally, visit Colorado’s website on Medicaid.