Washington, D.C. – February 6, 2020 – Tonight the House of Representatives cast a vote of disapproval of guidance that would fundamentally alter the Medicaid program. The Medicaid Healthy Adult Opportunity, or block grant, guidance released one week ago would allow states to shift how they receive federal funding from a percentage match, wherein the program’s funding adjusts automatically to account for the number of enrollees and rising health care costs, to one where funding could be capped. These grants would apply specifically to the Medicaid expansion population and optional adult populations.
Medicaid is the primary health insurance for nearly 65 million people, 2 million of whom have a history of cancer and an estimated 500,000 who gained coverage through expansion.
The following is a statement from Lisa Lacasse, president of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN):
“As the block grant guidance has the potential to significantly reduce access to comprehensive health care for low-income cancer patients, survivors and their families in states that choose to apply, we commend the House for expressing disapproval.
“Research shows that those that have access to insurance coverage have better health outcomes. Increased access to health insurance under Medicaid has helped increase cancer screening rates and improve health outcomes, and the block grant guidance risks reversing that important progress.
“On behalf of cancer patients, survivors and those at risk for being diagnosed, ACS CAN urges the Administration to rethink this troubling guidance and encourages states to strengthen their Medicaid programs, rather than seek ways to cut funding and by extension erect barriers to lifesaving health care.”