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Wolf: 500,000 Pennsylvanians enrolled in state’s expanded Medicaid program

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DERRY TOWNSHIP, Pa. - State and health officials are celebrating a major milestone in Pennsylvania's expanded Medicaid program. Governor Wolf announced that 500,000 people have signed up for the government-funded health insurance. He delivered the news at Penn State Milton Hershey Medical Center in Dauphin County alongside medical professionals.

Wolf says in 2013, 14 percent of Pennsylvania's residents didn't have insurance and now that numbers has dropped to 8 percent.

The state expanded Medicaid back in January under the Affordable Care Act-- giving more people access to health insurance.

"Not having health insurance causes people to forgo care and delay preventive care,"  Penn State Hershey Medical Center CEO and Vice President Craig Hillemeier said. "That leads to poor outcomes, for the individual  and higher health care costs for society."

State officials say over 100,000 residents are still eligible for coverage.

The federal government is paying 100 percent of the medical costs of expansion through the next year.