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Bandaged up $100 bill Of those who lost Medicaid coverage as a result of the work requirement, 50% had increased problems paying off medical debt, 56% delayed medical care and 64% delayed taking medications.

When the ACA opened the door for states to expand Medicaid, many sought to tie the expansion to a work requirement. Arkansas was one of the first states to do so in 2018, though a judge eventually blocked the requirement. Still, the short experiment with Medicaid work requirements offers up a glimpse of how effective such programs could be. Unfortunately, the results aren’t promising: Imposing work requirements on Medicaid recipients did not boost their rate of employment, despite the stated aims made by supporters of the programs, according to a recent study from Harvard researchers.

The study, published in Health Affairs this month, assessed a work requirements provision introduced into the Medicaid program in Arkansas in 2018. Researchers at Harvard University conducted a telephonic survey of 2,706 low-income residents in Arkansas, from Nov. 6 to Jan. 3, which built on prior data in 2016 and 2018 about work requirements in Medicaid coverage.

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