Legislature Gives Final OK To Keeping Arkansas Medicaid Expansion

Mar 7, 2018

The Arkansas House chamber on Wednesday afternoon.
Credit ArkansasHouse.org

Arkansas lawmakers have voted to continue the state's Medicaid expansion another year after federal officials approved a plan to impose a work requirement on the program.

The Arkansas House approved by a 79-15 vote Wednesday the budget for the state's Medicaid program and the expansion, which uses federal and state funds to purchase private insurance for low-income residents. The measure needed at least 75 votes to pass. It now heads to the governor's desk.

The Trump administration earlier this week approved Arkansas' request to require thousands on the Medicaid expansion to work or volunteer. Arkansas is the third state allowed to impose a work requirement on Medicaid.

More than 285,000 people are on the program, which was created as an alternative to expanding Medicaid under the federal health care law.