New Hampshire wins approval for Medicaid work requirements

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Medicaid beneficiaries in New Hampshire will have to work, attend school or perform community service to be eligible for benefits under a new waiver approved by the Trump administration.

Under the program, adults aged 19 to 64 will be required to participate in 100 hours per month of “community engagement activities,” such as employment, education, job skills training or community service.

New Hampshire expanded Medicaid under ObamaCare in 2014 to people earning up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level; state Republicans have been pushing to add work requirements ever since. 

The waiver program will also require co-pays for Medicaid recipients who make more than 100 percent of the poverty level.

“Work requirements help lift able-bodied individuals out of poverty by empowering them with the dignity of work and self-reliability while also allowing states to control the costs of their Medicaid programs. They help people gain the skills necessary for long-term independence and success,” New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu (R) said in a statement.

The approval makes New Hampshire the fourth state to institute a Medicaid work requirement. The Trump administration has been promising flexibility for states and encouraging them to impose such requirements, which were never approved under the Obama administration.

Work requirements in Indiana, Arkansas and Kentucky have already been approved, and there are six states with pending applications. The administration has yet to approve work requirements for states that have not expanded Medicaid.

New Hampshire will exempt a variety of people from the requirements, including the elderly and people with children.

“I congratulate Governor Sununu’s commitment to join me in improving the lives of Medicaid beneficiaries by creating a crucial link to work and community engagement,” Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Administrator Seema Verma said in a statement.

Tags Medicaid Medicaid work requirements New Hampshire

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