Millions of individuals who rely on Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for healthcare coverage may be removed from the program once Medicaid redeterminations resume on April 1. This Medicaid unwinding is due to new provisions in the Consolidated Appropriation Act (CAA), signed into law in December of 2022 that put an end to the continuous coverage provision within the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). Once states resume redeterminations of Medicaid eligibility, individuals enrolled in the program will be required to verify their personal information, including address, income, and household size. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, an estimated 5 to 14 million people could lose Medicaid coverage once the provision ends. As part of the unwinding process, the CCA requires states to develop operational plans to communicate these upcoming changes to Medicaid enrollees and take steps to minimize administrative errors. States are also operating on different timelines to review Medicaid eligibility, with some starting as soon as April and others planning to begin redeterminations as late as May, June, or July.
An estimated 7 million children and teenagers are at risk of losing their healthcare coverage when Medicaid redeterminations resume in April, according to new data from the Georgetown University Health Policy Institute. Of the 83 million people who will require Medicaid eligibility redeterminations, 34.2 million are children under the age of 18. While some states have continuous coverage safeguards in place for children, 17 states do not, increasing the risk that this vulnerable group will lose their Medicaid or CHIP eligibility. While federal estimates say that over 70% of children enrolled in the program will remain technically eligible, lack of awareness about the redeterminations, as well as administrative errors, could contribute to increased rates of coverage loss.