Health Care

Trump: Working Is Good for Your Health

States will now be allowed to implement work requirements for able-bodied Medicaid recipients.

Political Editors · Jan. 16, 2018

Working is a good thing and good for your health too. President Donald Trump is now making this argument as his administration announced that it would allow states to enact work requirements for Medicaid. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) stated that it would “support state efforts to test incentives that make participation in work or other community engagement a requirement for continued Medicaid eligibility or coverage for certain adult Medicaid beneficiaries. … CMS supports state efforts to enable individuals to gain and maintain employment.”

Citing research on the overall health benefits of working, the CMS said, “A growing body of evidence suggests that targeting certain health determinants, including productive work and community engagement, may improve health outcomes.” The Foundation for Government Accountability noted that since 2000 the number of individuals receiving Medicaid benefits has more than doubled to 75 million enrolled — including 28 million able-bodied adults. Over 50% of Medicaid beneficiaries who are able-bodied adults do not work.

Since the passage of ObamaCare the number of individuals enrolled in Medicaid has increased significantly, greatly adding cost to the program. Unfortunately, there are those who reject the notion that able-bodied adults benefiting from the Medicaid program should be required to perform at least 80 hours of work a month via a job, community engagement activity, education, job skills training or volunteering. Fundamentally, working is a good and rewarding aspect of life. It produces less dependency, greater personal accountability, and purpose in life. It is the primary means by which an individual positively contributes to their community and society at large. Work is empowering, and should never be vilified for political gain.

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