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Health and Reentry Project Brief Issue 1

Medicaid and Reentry
Policy Changes and Considerations for 
Improving Public Health and Public Safety

This issue brief is the first in a series of publications from the Health and Reentry Project (HARP). It describes Medicaid’s role as well as the policy changes that are under consideration, health care in the criminal justice system, and key implementation issues that will be central to the success of changing Medicaid’s role at reentry. The brief is intended to inform and advance discussion of that changing role among health and criminal justice system leaders, advocates, and people and communities that will be affected by new policies in this area. HARP is facilitating discussion among a wide group of these stakeholders during a March 2022 convening and will use the results of that discussion to develop a second issue brief for publication in late spring 2022 that will explore implementation issues in greater depth.

This brief is structured in five sections:

      1. Medicaid and its Role in the U.S. Health Care System
      2. Corrections and Health Care in the Criminal Justice System
      3. Medicaid’s Role for People Who Are Incarcerated
      4. Medicaid and Reentry: Recent and Potential Changes
      5. Key Implementation Challenges and Questions

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