What Will Happen to Medicaid Enrollees’ Health Coverage after the Public Health Emergency?
A new Urban Institute report includes updated projections of Medicaid coverage and costs following the end of the public health emergency (PHE). The report builds upon a previous analysis on the rise in Medicaid enrollment at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, mainly attributable to the continuous coverage requirement of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. In their new brief, Urban projects Medicaid enrollment for the population under age 65 and federal and state Medicaid spending for 2022 and 2023, assuming the PHE is extended through the first, second, or third quarters of 2022. The authors find that the longer the PHE lasts, the greater the potential number of people losing Medicaid coverage over the 14 months after the PHE ends: 12.9 million if it expires after the first quarter of 2022, 14.4 million if it expires after the second quarter, and 15.8 million if it expires after the third quarter.