Expanded Medicaid sign-ups begin Wednesday

The expanded health care program should give more options to more people — and save the state some of the money it now spends on medical care for the uninsured.

The federal government for years now has allowed states to sign up for the expanded coverage, but political considerations prevented Louisiana from taking part until now.

The main bonus from the expansion, though, is that hundreds of thousands of people who are employed but who make too little money to afford private insurance will gain access to medical care.

Gov. John Bel Edwards has estimated that 375,000 people could benefit from the new program this year alone.

The eligibility guidelines are $16,200 annual salary for an individual or $33,400 for a family of four. If you make less than that, there could be help available for you.

“For the first time in the state’s history, a majority of working adults will not have to worry about if they can take care of themselves,” said Louisiana Health and Hospitals Secretary Rebekah Gee. “This is an important step for the state’s health.”

That’s not an overstatement.

Gee is correct to point out that this will be a huge help to people who fell between Medicaid eligibility and being able

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