The AAMC Feb. 27 endorsed a bill introduced by Senators Mark Warner (D-Va.) and Doug Jones (D-Ala.) to allow states that expanded Medicaid after 2014 to receive the same full federal matching funds as states that previously expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act (ACA, P.L. 111-148 and P.L. 111-152).
The States Achieve Medicaid Expansion Act of 2019 (SAME Act) would ensure that any state that expands Medicaid receives an equal level of federal funding for the expansion, regardless of when they chose to expand. Currently, states that chose to expand coverage after 2014 do not receive the same federal matching rates as those that expanded immediately. Under this bill, a state would receive three years of full federal funding, phasing down to a 90% match for the sixth year of the expansion and in subsequent years.
In a press release, Sen. Warner stated, “Today, Medicaid expansion is bringing billions of tax dollars back home to Virginia, and more than 400,000 Virginians have gained access to quality, low-cost or no-cost Medicaid coverage.” He added this bill “encourages the states that have yet to take the same step to expand Medicaid as Congress intended.”