The latest drop in Medicaid coverage shows that 92,576 people lost access in September to the program meant for low-income families and individuals, according to data from the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration.
The new number adds to the more than half a million Floridians who have lost coverage since the end of the COVID-19 emergency.
Out of those 92,576 people, more than 76% were 20 years old or younger, according to data published by the agency on Monday.
The total number of people who have lost coverage since April is 616,652, according to AHCA data. Although September was not the month with the highest drop in eligibility, it was the second-highest drop in children’s coverage since the start of the redetermination process in April. That process is used to verify that people are eligible for Medicaid.
In fact, children ages 11 to 18 accounted for 30.5% of coverage loss while 12.7% of adults 36 to 59 lost access to Medicaid, according to the data.
However, that number will keep growing. Officials from the state agencies overseeing eligibility for the program said last week that there are still more than two million Floridians whose cases have to be reviewed.
The redetermination of coverage started earlier this year after the end of continued coverage under the COVID-19 emergency and will continue until March.
Overall, Florida has disenrolled 32 percent of people from Medicaid out of the reviewed cases, which puts the state in the 18th spot, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation tracker of nationwide data. The first spot belongs to Oregon, which has only disenrolled 4 percent of people.
Florida’s rate of people who lost coverage over procedural reasons improved slightly. The procedural terminations occurred when people did not complete the renewal process either because the state had outdated contact information or the person did not submit additional documentation. The rate of procedural terminations is 51 percentin Florida, according to the KFF tracker. Before the data came out on Monday, the rate was 55 percent.
The drop in coverage has garnered outrage from public health advocacy groups across Florida. Fifty groups asked Gov. Ron Desantis on Oct. 10 to pause the process. They cited the rate of procedural terminations as one of the reasons the process should stop.
Still, last week, officials from AHCA and the Department of Children and Families defended their handling of the redetermination process during a meeting on the Senate’s Appropriations Committee on Health and Human Services. But even during the COVID-19 emergency period, 63,000 Floridians lost Medicaid coverage, according to the Tampa Bay Times.
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