But advocates for the poor blasted the move, noting most Medicaid enrollees already work, go to school, or are taking care of sick relatives.
“The Trump administration’s approval of Arkansas’ harsh work requirement in Medicaid will likely set back the state’s considerable progress under the Affordable Care Act in increasing coverage and improving access to care, health and financial stability for low-income Arkansans,” said Judith Solomon, vice president for health policy at the left-leaning Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.
Arkansas officials said they need the work requirement because without it many enrollees won’t seek out work or job training. Since January 2017, fewer than 5% of Medicaid enrollees who were referred to the state Department of Workforce Services to help with job training followed through and accessed services.
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