Setting the Record Straight on Medicaid Work Requirements

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What happens when you take a program intended for the truly needy, and place millions of able-bodied, working-age adults on it in an instant? We don’t have to speculate to find an answer—because in 2014, that’s exactly what happened when ObamaCare’s Medicaid expansion was implemented. As a result, budgets were busted and providers struggled, all while the most vulnerable have had to continue to wait for their care.

After experiencing this disaster, many states that expanded Medicaid under ObamaCare sought to implement some form of reasonable restraint on their system. As a result, they applied for waivers from the federal government to implement commonsense Medicaid work requirements. These measures don’t apply to the truly needy. Rather, they simply require able-bodied, working-age adults to work, train, or even just volunteer on a part-time basis.

Yet, the Biden administration is already rolling back these work requirements—most recently in Michigan and Wisconsin—forcing states to relinquish control of their Medicaid rolls. Some, including a recent group of welfare reform critics, back the Biden move without taking a hard look at the evidence.