Biden to expand access to health care for some immigrants: Officials

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is set to announce that his administration is expanding eligibility for Medicaid and the Affordable Care Act. Health insurance exchanges For hundreds of thousands of immigrants to come to America Illegally as a childAccording to two US officials briefed on the matter.

The act allows participants in the Obama era Delayed action for the arrival of childhood program, or DACA, to access government-funded health insurance programs. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the matter ahead of the formal announcement on Thursday.

In the year The 2012 DACA initiative was designed to protect immigrants who come to the U.S. illegally as children brought to the U.S. illegally by their parents and to allow them to work in the country legally. However, the immigrants were still ineligible for government-subsidized health insurance programs because they did not meet the definition of “lawful presence” in the U.S., which Biden’s Department of Health and Human Services plans to change by the end of the month.

The White House’s move comes as the DACA program comes into effect. Legal risk And the number of people eligible for the program is decreasing.

At the end of last year, an estimated 580,000 people were still enrolled in DACA, according to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services. This number is lower than previous years. A court order currently prevents the US Department of Homeland Security from processing new applications. The DACA program has been mired in legal challenges for years, but Congress has stayed It was not possible to reach an agreement On sweeping immigration reforms.

DACA recipients can legally work and pay taxes, but they do not have legal status and are denied many benefits available to US citizens and aliens living in the US.

In recent years, millions of people in the United States have signed up for Medicaid, which provides health care coverage to poor Americans during the Covid-19 pandemic. The government increased federal subsidies to reduce the cost of plans in the Affordable Care Act marketplace. As of last year, only 8% of Americans lacked health insurance, according to HHS.

But DACA recipients, as well as those in the country who are undocumented, are barred from joining federally funded programs. About half of the roughly 20 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. are uninsured, he said. Research from the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Despite bipartisan support for some form of protection for the immigrants, negotiations have often broken down amid arguments over border security and the possibility that expanded protections would prevent others from trying to enter the U.S. without permission. Biden, a Democrat, has repeatedly called on Congress to create a path to citizenship for immigrants who came to the U.S. illegally as children.

Other categories of refugees – including asylum seekers and their dependents Temporary protection status – Eligible to buy insurance through the ACA marketplaces, former President Barack Obama’s 2010 health care law, often called “Obamacare.”

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