May 4, 2017

American Health Care Act Threatens Access to Coverage for Millions of Florida Seniors and Adults with Disabilities

The U.S. House leadership’s health plan — the American Health Care Act (AHCA) — would put at risk low-income Florida seniors and adults with disabilities who rely on Medicaid as their sole access to affordable health care. Cutting Medicaid by $880 billion and capping its financing structure would jeopardize the complex health care needs of the most vulnerable Floridians. Although the share of seniors and adults with disabilities is a small percentage of the total Medicaid population, their per-enrollee cost of care is more than double their representation in the program, reflecting their complex and intensive medical needs.

Medicaid is a lifeline for approximately 4 million Floridians, including roughly 1.7 million low-income adults including individuals with disabilities and seniors whose special conditions require regular medical and intensive long-term care services. Nationally, Medicaid covers 6 million seniors and 10 million persons with disabilities In Florida, low-income seniors and adults with disabilities account for 21 percent of total Medicaid enrollees, but represent more than 57 percent of program spending,reflecting their significant health care needs and more intensive long-term care. The graph below shows the share of Medicaid enrollees in the Medicaid program and their respective per enrollee spending for Fiscal Year (FY) 2015-16.

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