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Medicaid issue remains in Florida

Although Florida lawmakers were successful in passing a new budget, one item still left on the table is the expansion of Medicaid to low-income residents. How this sticking point in the state's legislature is going to affect elderly recipients remains to be seen, but lawmakers from both the state House and Senate are discussing the impact the issue is going to have on upcoming elections.

The Sarasota Herald-Tribune reported that the real issue at hand is whether or not to expand the Medicaid program using federal money to individuals and families in the coverage gaps. The issue has already polarized the Republican Party in Florida, and many see it as being a major point of debate in the primary. One lawmaker believes it is basically common sense to ensure that the approximately 800,000 individuals who need medical coverage are able to receive it.

According to a report from Georgetown University's Center for Children and Families, uninsured parents make up about 28 percent of participants who are potentially eligible to receive benefits under the Medicaid expansion in Florida's population, even though over half of these parents are employed. Also, The Kaiser Family Foundation reported that America is still dealing with a significant coverage gap when it comes to medical insurance. According to its report, 43 percent in the gap work full time and 23 percent have part time jobs.

Even though nothing was specifically mentioned in the report about how this issue will affect elderly candidates for Medicaid, many older and retired residents count on the coverage for their basic health care needs. Those with questions or concerns about how the state's decisions regarding Medicaid will affect them would need to consult with a professional who is experienced in Medicaid planning and law.

Source: Sarasota Herald-Tribune, "Medicaid wedge may persist," Zac Anderson, June 20, 2015

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