Medicaid Expansion Success Stories

Since coverage under Medicaid expansion began in July 2016, more than 400,000 working Louisianans have gained access to health care. But, it’s not just access. It’s the insurance coverage that pays for treatments that were once too costly for many people. Below are the stories of some of these newly covered residents.


I am truly grateful to have health insurance. Medicaid Expansion literally saved my life. I received word that I am a Medicaid member last August. Shortly thereafter, during my first visit to a doctor, they found tumors on my adrenal gland. They turned out to be cancerous, a rare cancer found in only 2% of people. Had they not been removed, my diagnosis would have been terminal. If I would have waited any longer to see about this, I would have been in deep hot water trying to save my life.


I moved here over four years ago to attend the University of New Orleans where I’m a senior studying music with hopes of specializing in music therapy. In October, I had several severe headaches. After passing out, an urgent care facility referred me to the emergency room at UMC, since I did not have health insurance. There, I learned that I had a brain mass, and would need surgery to remove it. The day before surgery, I applied for Medicaid. After the surgery, doctors shared this was a glioblastoma, a very aggressive type of brain cancer. Without this Medicaid, I didn’t know that I could ever have paid for all the medicines and treatment that was needed.

New Orleans

I lost insurance coverage for about 5-6 months and then applied for Medicaid Expansion and was able to receive it. I went to the doctor in August, and then to a cardiologist to see if my stent was working properly. While there, the doctor performed a scan on my carotid artery and found that I had a 98% blockage on one side and a 99% blockage on the other. I had surgery in December on the left side and in February on the right side. Without this, I would have had a stroke and died. Had I not had insurance, I would not have gone to the doctor. This insurance saved my life.


I enrolled in Medicaid through expansion in July. In the beginning of August I went to my primary care because I was having abdominal pain. With my new coverage, I was able to get a colonoscopy and scans completed, which allowed doctors to diagnosis me with Stage IV colon cancer. I now receive chemotherapy every two weeks, and take a variety of different medicines that I would not be able to get if not for Medicaid.


I teach a diabetes group in Slidell and I am teaching a gentleman who is 58 years old and just received Medicaid. He went to the doctor for the first time in years and he was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.  He told me he had no idea and that it saved his life.

He just got diagnosed and the clinic sent him to me for the group class. His friend told him about the Medicaid expansion so he applied and received it.  He hasn’t had insurance in over 20 years he said. So he decided to make a doc appt. That is when he was diagnosed and the doctor asked him to join the group to help him learn about diabetes, what it is and how to eat healthy, exercise, etc.

Hospital Nurse

I’ve been on Medicaid Expansion for a little while now. I am on oxygen 24/7 and thanks to the program now I have the machine I need. I also have the wheelchair and oxygen bottles. My case manager through Louisiana Healthcare Connections, explains my medication, and a nurse visits me twice a week. It helps me out with everything I need and I thank God for it.

Lake Charles

I'm 60 yrs. old, HIV+, and without Medicaid I wouldn't have any medical coverage. My HIV medicines would be impossible to pay for since I'm on disability. I have high-blood pressure and other pre-existing ailments. Without Medicaid expansion, many women and children will lose healthcare coverage. The elderly can't afford the price of some medicines now, what will happen if you destroy the only thing that's working for the poor and disadvantaged.

Together Louisiana Member
St. Mary Parish

As a restaurant manager, I didn’t have health insurance through my job. My children are both on Medicaid, and my application was denied in the past because I made too much money. I got covered under Expansion, and since then was diagnosed with a thyroid condition. I’m now on medication and have it managed and I’m healthier, feeling better and losing weight. My experience has been everything that was promised, which I never would have believed was possible.


I received Medicaid in July when Medicaid expanded. A couple of weeks after I received my Medicaid card in the mail, I had severe abdominal pain and went to the ER. They diagnosed me with Stage IV ovarian cancer. I now have coverage for my surgeries and chemotherapy. I cannot imagine where I would be if I did not have Medicaid as I would not have been able to receive the treatment that I need.


I am working a low paying job and I have a special needs child, and we both have health challenges. Because of Medicaid expansion, I now have insurance.

Together Louisiana Member

I am a case manager in a Federal Bureau of Prisons Halfway House that helps inmates return to society as functioning citizens. One of the ways to avoid recidivism is to help them get good health care. The Medicaid program in LA is outstanding. It is also the first time many are able to go to the doctor, get a physical, and get health needs taken care of. Many are later able to get health care through their employers, or through ACA, as their income improves.

Together Louisiana Member
Baton Rouge

I have lived with sickle cell anemia almost all of my life, and looked to the local emergency room for care. Although I could get relief for my pain there, it was much more difficult to find someone to treat my ongoing vision problems. When coverage became available in Louisiana under the newly expanded Medicaid program in July, I applied for coverage. I now have a primary care physician who can provide all of the necessary care for my sickle cell disease including infection prevention, pain management and care that can prevent organ damage. Because of the coverage I now have through Medicaid expansion, I was also able to get two eye surgeries that were needed to reattach my retina. I am grateful to now have the coverage that is helping improve my vision and manage my sickle cell disease.


I worked to help a lady enroll right after enrollment started.  The woman began to cry when I told her she was now eligible for coverage because of the Medicaid Expansion. She told me she had so many health issues but could not see a doctor because of her financial situation. But now, because of Medicaid, she would finally be able to see a doctor and take care of her medical problems. She thanked me over and over again….it brought tears to my eyes.

LDH Medicaid Worker
Eligibility Call Center

I was a former patient of the Marketplace but found it very expensive and was able to switch to Medicaid after expansion. My health plan, Louisiana Healthcare Connections, found me a primary care physician for diabetes and an OB/GYN because I was considering becoming pregnant. I am now pregnant and getting case management for a high risk pregnancy.


A friend of mine has been battling cancer off and on for 16 years. He is also disabled, 45 years old and would not have access to care if not for Medicaid.

Together Louisiana Member
Baton Rouge

I am retired and needed triple bypass surgery, and not yet eligible for Medicare. My insurance through my job was not affordable, but Medicaid expansion, through the ACA, has provided me the life-saving care that I need. I am alive because of this coverage.

Together Louisiana Member

As I finished enrolling this new member, I asked him was there anything else I can assist him with and he started to cry while he stated,” It was a blessing speaking to you. It was just a blessing getting this Medicaid insurance as well and thank you for helping me.

LDH Worker

As a college student, I did not have medical coverage until expansion. I work part-time in a charter school but could not afford their health insurance plans. As Medicaid Expansion launched, I got married to a musician who also didn't have medical insurance. Now with the expansion we both have medical insurance which allows us to see the doctor, dentist and optometrist.  Medicaid expansion has also allowed my husband to receive life sustaining medical care after suffering a brain aneurysm.

New Orleans

My sister and brother-in-law signed up for Medicaid last fall. In December, she was diagnosed with liver failure. Her medicine alone would have cost thousands of dollars a month.

Together Louisiana Member
Baton Rouge

Because of expansion, I now have coverage that provides case management for my pregnancy.


If it was not for Medicaid expansion, I would not have health insurance.

Together Louisiana Member
New Orleans

I have Sarcoidosis real bad and Medicaid is the only insurance I have for me and my baby. With my disease, I have to constantly see a doctor, get expensive tests and need several medications.

Together Louisiana Member
Baton Rouge

My daughter and I have Secondary Adrenal Insufficiency- an uncommon condition that is fatal without proper treatment. Because of this, I have been ill unnecessarily for much of my life. And my daughter got so ill several years ago from lack of necessary life-sustaining treatment that her body was shutting down- she was dying a slow death. I now have a very caring doctor who started treating her thanks to Medicaid expansion.

Together Louisiana Member
Baton Rouge

Since I lost my job, I have depended on Medicaid through the ACA so I continue the medical care for recovery of thyroid cancer. Without it I would not be able to afford the medicines that I must take daily to remain cancer free.



I am a single mother of three kids (one has autism and another has seizures), and have been working on building my own business so that I can be home with my kids. Medicaid coverage is allowing me peace of mind for me and my children.

Baton Rouge


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