Medicaid Covers a Million Fewer Children. Baby Elijah Was One of Them.
Nationwide, more than a million children disappeared from the rolls of the two main state-federal health programs for lower-income children, Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program, between December 2017 and June, the most recent month with complete data.
Some state and federal officials have portrayed the drop — 3 percent of enrolled children — as a success story, arguing that more Americans are getting coverage from employers in an improving economy. But there is growing evidence that administrative changes aimed at fighting fraud and waste — and rising fears of deportation in immigrant communities — are pushing large numbers of children out of the programs, and that many of them are now going without coverage. The declines are concentrated in a minority of states; in other places, public coverage has actually increased.
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