How the Medicaid expansion has helped the homeless

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Department of Population and Public Health Sciences

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July 21, 2018
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As part of the USC Center for Health Journalism’s “Remaking Health Care” blog series, Michael Cousineau, professor of clinical preventive medicine, explains how Medicaid has assisted Los Angeles County’s efforts to house the homeless.

Michael Cousineau, DPH

The Affordable Care Act’s expansion of the low-income health care program “was a game-changer for homeless adults and their doctors,” Cousineau writes, noting that before the ACA, barriers to health care especially impacted the homeless. “In a recent study, clinics that provide health care for the homeless in Los Angeles now report that 80 percent of their homeless patients are covered by Medi-Cal.”

Cousineau argues that repealing the ACA’s Medicaid expansion “would threaten much of the progress we’ve made on homeless health.”

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