Washington, DC – Today, the Office of Management and Budget announced that the Trump administration’s plan to overhaul state Medicaid programs through block grants is officially under review. Protect Our Care executive director Brad Woodhouse issued the following in response:

“After repeatedly being rejected by Congress, the Trump administration is now trying to push states to implement so-called block grants in a blatant attempt to avoid scrutiny in order to sabotage Medicaid. Congress has shut down prior proposals to slash Medicaid through so-called block grants because of the harm it would inflict on the health of so many Americans who rely on it. But since taking office, President Trump has been on a crusade to sabotage Americans’ health care and this attack on Medicaid is just the latest battle in this administration’s war on American health care.”    

BACKGROUND:

Joan Alker, Executive Director Of Georgetown University’s Center For Children And Families: Block-Granting Medicaid “Failed Through Legislation So They Are Trying Through The Administration.” “‘It’s clear that block-granting Medicaid is the Holy Grail,’ said Joan Alker, executive director of Georgetown University’s Center for Children and Families. ‘It failed through legislation so they are trying through the administration.’” [Wall Street Journal, 3/15/19]

Center On Budget And Policy Priorities: Medicaid Block Grant Would Slash Federal Funding, Shift Costs To States, And Leave Millions More Uninsured. “To compensate for the federal Medicaid funding cuts a block grant would institute, states would either have to contribute much more of their own funding or, as is far more likely, use the greater flexibility the block grant would give them to make draconian cuts to eligibility, benefits, and provider payments.  For example, Speaker Ryan’s ‘Better Way’ health plan would give states the choice of a block grant or a Medicaid per capita cap; both would appear to enable states to make sizeable cuts directly affecting beneficiaries that states can’t make now. This could include using waiting lists or capping enrollment; under current law, all eligible individuals who apply for Medicaid must be allowed to enroll.” [Center On Budget And Policy Priorities, 11/30/16]