(The Center Square) — About 700,000 foreign nationals in the U.S. illegally will be able to access taxpayer-funded health care under a new program President Joe Biden authorized Thursday.
Foreign nationals in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals — or DACA — program will be able to access Medicaid or to purchase insurance on Obamacare exchanges, according to the announcement.
“We need to give Dreamers the opportunities and support they deserve,” Biden said in a video message. “Today, my administration is announcing our plan to expand health coverage for DACA recipients by allowing them to enroll in a plan through the Affordable Care Act or through Medicaid.”
Dreamers is a term frequently used to refer to members of DACA, an Obama-era program that allows illegal immigrants who entered the country as children to be protected from deportation.
“The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to providing Dreamers the opportunities and support they need succeed. Today President Biden is announcing a plan to expand health coverage for DACA recipients,” a release on the White House’s website says. “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.”
The release does not include information on how much the new program is expected to cost taxpayers.