Issue: Republicans in Congress are expected to repeal portions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) using a fast-track process known as budget reconciliation.
Goals: This issue brief examines how repeal legislation could affect Medicaid, the nation's health care safety net, which insured 70 million people in 2016.
Findings and Conclusions: Partial-repeal legislation that passed Congress but was vetoed by President Obama in 2016 offers some insight but new legislation could go further. It could repeal the ACA's Medicaid eligibility expansions for adults and children but also roll back other provisions, such as simplified enrollment and improvements in long-term services and supports for beneficiaries with disabilities. Additionally, the Trump Administration could expand use of demonstration authority to introduce deeper structural changes into Medicaid, such as eligibility restrictions tied to work, required premium contributions and lock-out for nonpayment, annual enrollment periods, and coverage limits and exclusions. Together, these changes would have far-reaching implications for Medicaid's continued role as the nation's safety-net insurer.