Faces of PA's Medicaid Program (2011)

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Since its inception, Medicaid has paid for medical care for millions of low-income Americans. However, with its numerous eligibility categories, variations in covered services and complicated rules governing the administration of the program, it is easy to become confused about whom and what services the Medicaid program covers. This report will provide information on Medicaid in Pennsylvania where it is referred to as Medical Assistance, and put a “face” to the enrolled population. The intention is to provide state policy makers and stakeholders with a fundamental understanding of who the program serves and its significance across the Commonwealth.

We begin by presenting a broad overview of the Medicaid program. Then, we describe requirements for eligibility in Pennsylvania. Next, we provide detailed information on covered individuals, such as the proportion of the population in each Pennsylvania County that is covered by Medicaid. We go on to describe the recent enrollment growth in Pennsylvania’s Medical Assistance program as a result of the economic downturn. Finally, we compare the distribution of Pennsylvania individuals across the broad eligibility categories with spending across those categories.

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