Breaking News
More () »

Virginia begins removing thousands of people from Medicaid rolls

The federal promise to let everyone keep their insurance during the coronavirus pandemic is coming to an end.

MANASSAS, Va. — Virginia began the process Monday of culling as many as 400,000 Virginians from the state’s Medicaid rolls. D.C. and Maryland will be close behind, as states beginning enforcing eligibility rules that were suspended during the pandemic. 

Nearly half the people who lose coverage could lose it even though they still qualify, but have yet to prove it.

Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra toured the Birmingham Green senior living facility in Manassas with Congresswoman Jennifer Wexton on the day Virginia began unwinding its pandemic-era Medicaid rolls.

 “A lot of Americans will qualify for Medicaid again, they just have to re-enroll,” Becerra told WUSA9.

Almost all the people in the Northern Virginia Health Care Commission nursing home at Birmingham Green are on Medicaid.

An estimated 15 million low-income people, families and children, pregnant women and people with disabilities could lose coverage nationwide, as America unwinds its promise to let everyone keep their health insurance during the health emergency.

“We are concerned that as many as 150,000 children in Virginia could lose their access to health care coverage during the unwinding process,” said Rachael Deane, CEO of Voices for Virginia Children 

Recipients will have to reapply and prove they qualify, and that could leave an estimated 46% without Medicaid, even though they’re eligible.

“We can’t let a missing address or a lost phone number mean that we don’t reach people who still qualify for Medicaid,” said Bacerra.

One big group that will lose Medicaid: immigrant children who don’t have documents. 

"I believe everyone should have access to the health care they need," Bacerra said. "But we also have to work within the confines of the law." 

Many people removed from Medicaid who no longer qualify may still qualify for Obamacare, with some plans charging as little as $10 a month.

Rep. Wexton encouraged anyone in her district with questions to reach out to her office.

WUSA9 is now on Roku and Amazon Fire TVs. Download the apps today for live newscasts and video on demand.

Download the WUSA9 app to get breaking news, weather and important stories at your fingertips.

Sign up for the Get Up DC newsletter: Your forecast. Your commute. Your news.
Sign up for the Capitol Breach email newsletter, delivering the latest breaking news and a roundup of the investigation into the Capitol Riots on January 6, 2021.

Before You Leave, Check This Out