Kaiser Family Foundation Releases Report on Medicaid Expansion and Homelessness

kaiser-family-foundation-health-insurance-costsThe Kaiser Family Foundation, in collaboration with the National Health Care for the Homeless Council, has released a new issue brief examining the early impacts of Medicaid expansion on people experiencing homelessness and the health centers that serve them. Based on focus groups with administrators, clinicians, and enrollment workers at Health Care for the Homeless (HCH) grantees in five states, this report describes the increases in coverage and the new opportunities for better care, more comprehensive services, and improved health through Medicaid in states that expanded.

The issue brief also describes a range of new challenges related to continuity of enrollment, access to care, and administrative requirements that are inherent in managed care environments. The National HCH Council thanks the five HCH projects that participated in this study. Their daily work will help stimulate policy improvements to ensure that the Affordable Care Act works well for those without homes.

Please use this issue brief to advance state and federal discussions related to the Medicaid expansion. In states that have not yet expanded, it is critical policymakers better understand the benefits to a very vulnerable population and the health care providers that serve them. States that have expanded coverage should focus on maximizing this new opportunity to implement policies that could not only improve health outcomes, but also help prevent and end homelessness.