CCLP fights to ensure Medicaid and the Child Health Plan Plus (CHP+) are effective supports for Colorado families. CCLP works directly with state policymakers and administrators to protect and expand access to health care, including Medicaid and CHP+. When necessary, CCLP goes to court in order to protect access to appropriate medical care and to make sure Colorado’s Medicaid program follows state and federal laws.
Many men can draft many laws. But few have the piercing and humane eye which can see beyond the words to the people that they touch. – President Lyndon Johnson,1965
An additional 160,000 low-income Coloradans became eligible for Medicaid on January 1, 2014. Medicaid is now available to all Coloradans with incomes at or below 133 percent of the Federal Poverty Level, which equals $31,332 for a family of four and $15,282 for an individual. CCLP estimates more than 122,000 of those who are expected to gain coverage are members of working families.
Providing access to health care to 122,000 working Coloradans by expanding Medicaid will have widespread benefits throughout Colorado’s economy. Not only will it provide those low-wage workers the peace of mind and physical well-being that most higher-income Coloradans already enjoy, but expanding Medicaid will also bolster some of the primary economic engines in Colorado. Many of the people who benefit directly are employed in restaurants, ski resorts and key industries throughout the state.View full issue brief
Medicaid is a foundational part of the nation’s commitment to equal opportunity for all people, regardless of age, disability or income. Along with the companion Child Health Plan Plus (CHP+) program, Medicaid in Colorado provides critical health coverage to hundreds of thousands of residents.
1965 – Medicaid became law.
1969 – Colorado established a Medicaid program.
1986 – Medicaid eligible undocumented immigrants were covered under Medicaid for emergency care only.
1996 – Welfare reform severed any formal link between cash assistance and Medicaid.
1997 – State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) became law.
2001 – Health Insurance Flexibility and Accountability (HIFA) waivers created.
2003 – In an attempt to save money during an economic downturn, Colorado temporarily eliminated eligibility for pregnant women in CHP+ and capped enrollment for children.
2005 – The Colorado General Assembly passed a bill directing a portion of tobacco tax revenues to expand eligibility for pregnant women and children in CHP+ and reinstate eligibility for lawfully present immigrants.
2005 – The federal Deficit Reduction Act added new flexibility and authority to increase co-payments in Medicaid and established new proof of identify and citizenship requirements.
2009 – The Colorado Health Care Affordability Act established a hospital provider fee that enabled the state to draw down new federal matching funds, used in subsequent years to expand Medicaid and CHP+.
2009 – The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) provided states with enhanced Medicaid matching funds, which helped them through the recession.
2010 – The Affordable Care Act passed, which gave states funding to expand Medicaid to cover all U.S. citizens and qualified aliens up to 133 percent of the federal poverty level by 2014.