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Medicaid Churning and Continuity of Care

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Research shows that disruptions in Medicaid coverage are common and often lead to periods of uninsurance, delayed care, and less preventive care for beneficiaries. Studies suggest that beneficiaries moving in and out of Medicaid coverage (sometimes called “churning”) results in higher administrative costs, less predictable state expenditures, and higher monthly health care costs due to pent-up demand for health care services. This Issue Brief reviews evidence on churning among the Medicaid population and different policy options for states and the federal government to reduce churning, including continuous eligibility, Medicaid expansion for adults, express lane eligibility, presumptive eligibility, multimarket plans, and limiting premiums and cost-sharing.

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ASPE Issue Brief