DeWine administration appeals for approval for Ohio Medicaid work requirements

About 800,000 Ohioans are covered through Medicaid expansion.

The DeWine administration is appealing to the federal government, seeking to have work requirements for Ohio Medicaid.

About 800,000 Ohioans are covered through Medicaid expansion and for more than five years, conservative lawmakers have been trying to require those covered Ohioans to document they either have a job, are in school or have an exemption.

ExploreFeds withdraw approval for Ohio Medicaid work requirements

But Ohio can’t implement those work requirements because in August the Biden administration announced it was withdrawing federal approval for the changes. The changes were originally approved by the Trump administration.

Gov. Mike DeWine said he requested Attorney General David Yost take legal action to reverse the Biden administration’s decision.

“Eliminating reasonable requirements discourages people from becoming self-sufficient and only reinforces government dependency,” DeWine said. “Ohio’s program would offer assistance when Ohioans need it, while providing opportunities for future success.”

About 3.2 million Ohioans are covered by the joint state-federal insurance program, including just under 800,000 covered by the expansion of the program under the Affordable Care Act.

ExploreMedicaid work requirement ruling could affect Ohio

This includes around 43,200 people in Montgomery County, 24,300 in Butler County, 11,000 in Clark County, 8,400 in Greene County and 7,000 in Warren County covered by the expansion of Medicaid eligibility as of June.

The Biden administration, when it issued its August decision, noted that people could lose coverage because of documentation errors or lack of awareness. Officials highlighted Ohio’s problems with the computer system used to determine eligibility.

State audits have found serious issues with the system and with backlog, including one report indicating that the error rate for determining Medicaid eligibility in the state was 43%, more than double the national average.