Senators file bill to ban federally funded health coverage for undocumented individuals

Jakob Emerson – Thursday, January 18th, 2024 Becker’s Payer Issues

A group of Republican senators have introduced legislation that would ban the use of federal funding to expand state Medicaid benefits to undocumented residents.

Federal law already prohibits noncitizens from receiving Medicaid, but states can use their own funds to extend benefits.

“If a state chooses to give Medicaid benefits to illegal residents, the bill ensures that state does so entirely on its own dime, without any costs to taxpayers in other states,” according to a Jan. 11 news release from Sen. Bill Cassidy, MD.

In 2024, California became the first state to offer Medicaid coverage to all eligible undocumented individuals. A few other states offer Medicaid to noncitizens within certain age groups.