Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam had some news today for those tracking how many states will go along with the healthcare reform law's goal of covering millions more Americans under Medicaid: Tennessee will not.
Haslam said the state won't accept the additional Medicaid funding promised under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act unless federal officials allow Tennessee to use the money to help residents buy private health insurance.
Initiatives to expand Medicaid and launch new health insurance marketplaces are moving quickly as federal officials work with and cajole states to carry out those provisions of the Affordable Care Act—expected to extend coverage to about 15 million Americans in 2014. In the coming months, Modern Healthcare will provide frequent updates on state-specific developments.
Addressing a joint session of the Tennessee General Assembly, Haslam proposed meeting the law's goal of covering anyone earning up to 138% of the federal poverty level by using federal money to help newly eligible residents buy coverage from the insurance marketplace scheduled to begin enrolling people Oct. 1.