Bills would impose work requirements for Medicaid in Alaska

Some Alaska lawmakers want to require
recipients to work in order to receive their benefits.

Two bills introduced in the Legislature would impose work requirements, something one of the sponsors, Senate President
Pete Kelly
, said should be seen as a “privilege” and not a punishment.

The bills in the House and Senate have been introduced amid concerns with the growth of the Medicaid program and costs.

Average monthly Medicaid enrollment in Alaska grew by 23 percent from fiscal year 2016 to fiscal year 2017, which ended June 30, according to the state health department. That figure includes traditional Medicaid, which provides coverage for low-income pregnant women, children and people who are disabled, and the expanded Medicaid program, which covers lower-income adults not previously eligible for coverage.

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