Medicaid

Delivering high-quality Medicaid coverage and services

Medicaid

Delivering high-quality Medicaid coverage and services

Kaiser Permanente’s participation in Medicaid is core to our mission to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve. This critical program provides health coverage to over 1 in 5 Americans, including 1 out of every 3 children. Millions of eligible low-income adults, children, pregnant women, elderly adults, and people with disabilities depend on Medicaid for their health coverage.  

22% of the U.S. population is enrolled in Medicaid,  35.3% of American children are covered by Medicaid or the Children's Health Insurance Program,  43% of pregnant women rely on Medicaid

Kaiser Permanente supports the following Medicaid guiding principles:

  • Coverage: All Americans should have access to affordable, high-quality health care. Medicaid enrollment processes should be streamlined, coverage gaps should be minimized, and people should not lose access to care as a result of financial burdens.
  • Care for the whole-person, including social needs: The Medicaid program should support “whole-person care” by providing access to services and resources that address Medicaid recipients physical health, mental health, and social needs. Ensuring access to transportation, healthy food, and housing support services improves overall wellness, reduces the use of emergency care in nonemergency situations, and improves overall productivity.
  • Sustainable funding: Medicaid should continue to receive adequate, sustainable, and flexible federal and state funding.

To support these principles, we advocate for policies that:

  • Expand access to clinically appropriate, high-quality telehealth services for people on Medicaid
  • Incentivize states that have not already done so to expand Medicaid eligibility to the income levels outlined by the Affordable Care Act for childless adults
  • Promote strong quality measurement processes and quality performance incentives within Medicaid
  • Ensure that Medicaid payment methodologies account for the full range of health plan and provider models, including Kaiser Permanente’s integrated care model
  • Allow continuous enrollment of eligible enrollees, including women who have just given birth, whose coverage should be extended from 60 days to 12 months postpartum to stabilize maternal health and reduce health disparities
  • Ensure that work is not an eligibility requirement to access the “front door” of the health care system, particularly for low-income adults
  • Care for the whole person by allowing connecting of funding to support Medicaid beneficiaries’ social needs such as housing, food security, education, employment training and support services, transportation, and social isolation and family violence prevention

 

1 Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, 2019.
2 United States Census Bureau, 2019.
3 Kaiser Family Foundation, 2019.