The U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on the Affordable Care Act has left Missouri with a looming decision on expanding its Medicaid program.
The federal health care law originally required states to grow their Medicaid programs or risk losing their existing Medicaid funding from the federal government. States would have been required to take on more patients with higher incomes or risk being unable to fund Medicaid at all.
The Supreme Court, however, rejected this mandatory expansion in its June 28 ruling, which upheld most of the Affordable Care Act. Chief Justice John Roberts said the forced growth of the Medicaid program was a “gun to the head” of the states. The Medicaid provision was the only part of the health-care law rejected by the court.
About 14 percent of the state’s population, or 835,000 people have no health insurance. The aim of the Medicaid expansion was to bring that number down. Read more on Columbia Missourian.