(PartiallyPolitics.com) – Health officials are preparing for turmoil as for the first time since the pandemic, they are going to reassess who is still eligible for Medicaid. During the pandemic, there was a guaranteed eligibility policy in place which now ends.

Advocates have already warned that the lack of a safety net will mean that millions of people might lose coverage. The Biden administration has currently given the state a year to go through the process of going through the Medicaid roll and seeing who is still eligible for coverage. Prior to the pandemic, this was a routine procedure.

Some states are moving through their lists faster than that, with Arkansas only expected to take only six months to finish the process. Their reasoning is the cost concerns and Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders’s (R) drive to help people “escape the trap of government dependency.”

Eight states also started their renewal process in February and have started sending out renewal notices. However, they are not going to be terminating people from the program until May or June.

A Kaiser Family Foundation report stated that for most states the process will take at least one year. Katherine Hempstead, a senior policy adviser at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation stated that most states would tell you that there is going to be “chaos” and that it will be “a very, very painful experience for people that lose coverage.”

The Biden administration estimates that up to 15 million people might lose Medicaid, but many of those people should still be able to transition to employer-sponsored coverage or apply for insurance through the Affordable Care Act plan.

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