Document Type

Policy Brief

Publication Date



ACA, Affordable Care Act


The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was designed to achieve nearly universal access to health coverage in the United States—in part by standardizing Medicaid eligibility across the country so that each state’s program would cover individuals with incomes below 138% of the federal poverty level (FPL), or $15,856 for an individual and $32,499 for a family of four in 2013 (see Figure 1).i However, in June 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court determined that states could not be required to broaden Medicaid and retained the decision as a state option. States that choose to participate may do so by amending their state Medicaid plans, and there is no explicit deadline for this decision. Should a participating state choose to discontinue its participation in the future, it may do so without penalty through another state plan amendment. The Medicaid program is a shared responsibility of the federal and state governments. Currently, in Maine, for every $38 the state spends, the federal government matches that contribution with $62. This is known as the match rate or FMAP.


Health Policy Colloquium Brief

This Brief was prepared by Erika Ziller and Trish Riley of the Muskie School of Public Service to inform an April 8, 2013 colloquium convened to explore options and implications of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) for Maine.

For more information on the Muskie Health Policy Colloquium, see



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