This updated fact sheet, or “pocket primer”, from the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured describes the Medicaid program, the changes made to Medicaid by the Affordable Care Act, and the over 70 million Americans who rely on Medicaid for health insurance coverage.

The Medicaid program is the largest insurance program in the nation, providing 16% of national health care spending (about $532 billion in Fiscal Year 2015). About half of Medicaid beneficiaries are children, one-quarter are adults under age 65, and one-quarter are adults age 65 and older and individuals with disabilities. 60% of children with disabilities and 30% of adults under age 65 are covered by Medicaid. Medicaid also helps 1 out of every 5 adults age 65 and older pay their Medicare premiums, deductibles, and co-payments and often provides benefits these seniors with benefits not covered by Medicare, including long-term care, dental care, and vision care.  32 states have implemented the expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, and at least 11 million Americans have been able to enroll in Medicaid because of the expansions.

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