• July 27, 2015
    Medicaid at 50: A Look at the Long-Term Benefits of Childhood Medicaid

  • An emerging body of research underscores the significant role that Medicaid plays as a source of health coverage and financial protection for children and families—the benefits of which last through adulthood. New data highlight striking examples of the long-term effects of Medicaid—including better health, lower rates of mortality, better educational and economic outcomes, and many ways in which government recoups its investment in the long term. These findings underscore Medicaid’s role as not only a foundational source of health coverage for children, but also an investment in their future.

    In light of these findings, the need to preserve and strengthen Medicaid for future generations of children has never been greater as the program reaches its fiftieth year. This paper highlights the mounting evidence underscoring the positive long-term effects of childhood Medicaid coverage that emerge later in life for adolescents and adults.

    The Top Three Benefits

    1. As the Medicaid program turns 50 a growing body of research provides evidence that children with Medicaid coverage become healthier adults.

    Using longitudinal data from Medicaid expansions in the 1980s and 1990s, researchers found that children with access to Medicaid showed a 26 percentage point decline in the incidence of high blood pressure in adulthood. In addition, children with Medicaid had lower rates of hospitalizations and emergency room visits in adulthood—leading the government to recoup between 3 and 5 percent of the initial cost of Medicaid eligibility expansions in just one year. Children with Medicaid are also healthier adolescents, with lower rates of eating disorders, drinking, and mortality.

    2. Medicaid eligibility expansions for children also lead to greater academic achievements.

    Children who benefited from the Medicaid eligibility expansions were less likely to drop out of high school (9.7 percent decline) and more likely to graduate from college (5.5 percent increase).

    3. Children with access to Medicaid had greater economic success as adults.

    Two new studies indicate that these children had higher incomes later in life and were more likely to surpass their families’ economic status, making them less reliant on safety net programs and contributing to a strong government return on investment. Each additional year of Medicaid eligibility from birth to age 18 increased cumulative tax payments in adulthood of $186 per person (a 0.9 percent increase) and reduced receipt of the Earned Income Tax Credit receipts by $75 (a 2.4 percent decrease) by age 28. The increase in tax payments alone returned nearly one-third (32 cents on the dollar) of the initial cost of expanding childhood Medicaid by the time these children reached age 28, and 56 cents of each dollar by the time the children reached age 60. Medicaid-eligible children also had greater economic mobility, with a greater likelihood that their income exceeded that of their parents.


    Medicaid at 50

    Published on Jul 21, 2015
    It’s a big week for ALEC - not only do they have their annual meeting in San Diego where extremist legislators from across the country get wined and dined by corporate lobbyists, but they also rolled out a new promotional video! We loved their video so much we decided to make it even better by supplying some of the information they must have accidentally left out. Share it with your friends and read more on our blog:http://afsc.me/1Jcccpl




    July 09, 2015

    Pamela Goodman

    League of Women Voters of Florida



    "It has been a long hard, battle against devious, political scheming, but today the Florida Supreme Court handed the people of Florida a total victory, forcing the redrawing of every one of the eight districts that we contested in the lawsuit," said Pamela Goodman, president of the League of Women Voters of Florida, part of the coalition that filed suit to have the districts redrawn because of gerrymandering.

    "Not only must the legislature act speedily and hold a special session to redraw, what could prove to be nearly every congressional district in the state, but the Florida Supreme Court is leaving nothing to chance -- the court will have final approval on the redrawn districts."

    "The League will be watching this process closely to make sure our lawmakers operate in complete sunshine with one hundred percent transparency. Today, the Florida Supreme Court took the Florida Legislature to the woodshed. Their egregious behavior using partisan political operatives in the redistricting process was appropriately reprimanded. We commend our court system, our legal system and the hard work of citizens of Florida for making today a victory for the voice of the people," Goodman concluded. 
    Read the opinion and the order.

    The League of Women Voters of Florida, 

    a nonpartisan political organization, 

    encourages informed and active participation in government,

    works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, 

    and influences public policy through education and advocacy.