The Biden administration is expanding federal health care services to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program recipients. According to a White House statement, the Department of Health and Human Services will shortly propose a rule amending the definition of “lawful presence,” for purposes of Medicaid and Affordable Care Act coverage, to include DACA recipients.
DACA recipients often referred to as Dreamers are eligible immigrants who came to the United States as children dependent on their parents’ work visas. While they have grown up and received their education in America they are not recognised as U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents. The program does not grant them official legal status or a pathway to citizenship.
According to the statement, President Biden believes that the Dreamers strengthen U.S economy, and enrich schools and the community. His administration’s proposed plan will allow Dreamers to apply for coverage through the health insurance marketplace and through the state Medicaid agency just like other citizens.
“We are not done fighting for their pathway to citizenship, but we’re getting them the opportunities they deserve in the meantime,” Biden said making the historic announcement.
The democratic government aims to protect and strengthen the federal health insurance agencies by lowering costs and expanding coverage so that every American has the peace of mind that health insurance brings and the inclusion of DACA recipients is a step in that direction.
“The Administration continues to urge Congress to provide a pathway to citizenship to Dreamers, providing them the ultimate peace of mind they need and deserve,” the White House statement emphasized.
At present, schemes and programs available to DACA recipients include; AmeriCorps VISTA Program (to assist local organizations in alleviating poverty), a range of outdoor programming, environmental education, and volunteer service programs, and American job centers to help job seekers obtain employment and training to further their careers.