By Rosana G. Ferraro |
Governor Malloy has signed the budget and health care for low-income people took a huge hit.
Who loses? How many people are affected?
There were various cuts to Medicaid / HUSKY that will leave many without coverage or the financial help crucial to their care. These are the cuts that advocates and those who depend on these programs spoke out against, at a press event earlier this month.
- Parents to lose HUSKY coverage: Parents and caregivers covered under HUSKY A who make more than 138% of the Federal Poverty Line will no longer be eligible for coverage
- This means a parent or caregiver in a family of four making more than $2,830 a month would lose their coverage
- An estimated 9,500 parents and caregivers will lose coverage due to this cut
- Low-income people on Medicare lose financial help: A state Medicaid program that helps low-income elderly and people with disabilities pay for care that Medicare doesn’t cover has decreased its income eligibility rules (more about that program here). That means that care and medication that is critical for people’s survival may become unaffordable.
- Remember Jonathan Miller? He wrote about this terrible proposal as a guest blogger here on our site – he is one of the many hurt by this cut.
- More detail on the specific changes are here
- An estimated 68,000 elderly and people with disabilities will be affected
- Adults on Medicaid / HUSKY will have their dental benefits capped at $1,000: While language in the budget does allow for coverage of dentures and other medically necessary dental care, this is still a weakening of an important health benefit.
- Additionally, $15 million is cut from Medicaid in the biennium: That works out to $3 million in cuts in the current fiscal year, and an additional $12 million the next. We will be vigilant to see how these cuts will be made.
We need to protect our care, now more than ever
After a year of threats to health care at the federal level, it’s devastating to see that Connecticut has made these cuts. It is more important than ever to push back. We need to regain the progress that has been lost, and find a way that everyone has accessible, affordable, quality health care.