Enhanced citizenship verification and children's medicaid coverage - Working paper

James Marton
Angela Snyder
Mei Zhou

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This paper examines the impact of Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 mandated citizenship verification requirements on the Medicaid coverage of children using state administrative data from Georgia. Out analysis focuses on children enrolled in Medicaid prior to the reform in the eligibility category for which the reform is most likely to be binding. We find that these children were slightly more likely to exit during the first "high impact" recertification in which the enhanced citizenship verification was binding than children whose first recertification occurred just prior to the reform. In addition, we observe a slightly lower re-entry probability among children exiting during a "high impact" first recertification. Assuming at least some of the exiting children are non-citizens, the fact that the exit and re-entry rates associated with a "high impact" first recertification are only modestly different from other first recertification months suggests that the reform is probably not having a dramatic impact on citizens.