RESEARCH AREAS > Health Care Policy > Transitional Medi-Cal: A Study of the Participation Rate and Its Determinants
Transitional Medi-Cal: A Study of the Participation Rate and Its Determinants
Studies reporting low participation rate in the Transitional Medi-Cal (TMC) program typically do not identify eligible families. Therefore there is little knowledge of the low TMC participation rate and its determinants. A significant improvement in TMC participation is an important policy goal for at least two reasons. First, it will increase access to health care in California, which leads the nation in the number of uninsured. Second, transitional Medicaid is expected to be an integral component of economic self-sufficiency for families who leave welfare for work. Using administrative and survey data, we develop a methodology to estimate TMC eligibility, hence much improved estimates of TMC participation rate and its determinants. It is estimated that 35% - 47% of families exiting welfare in California 1993-1997 were eligible for TMC. Of these 26% were enrolled in TMC after exiting welfare (usually for six months), while 14% were in other Medi-Cal programs for six months. About half (49%) of eligibles were in Medicaid for only 2-3 months of the six post-welfare months, and 11% had no Medicaid coverage. Among exiters who were uninsured for all six months after leaving welfare (18% of the sample), 21% - 28% were TMC eligible.
Project PublicationsTransitional Medi-Cal for Families Leaving Welfare Is Underused