Two-Thirds of Federal Grants to States Are for Medicaid

Program funding has been major source of spending growth since 2008

Two-Thirds of Federal Grants to States Are for Medicaid

This data was updated in March 2019. Please see "Medicaid Makes Up Most Federal Grants to States."

Medicaid is by far the largest federal grant to states, accounting for 67 percent of total grant funding in 2017. The next-largest funding area is income security (temporary cash assistance, employment services, school-provided meals, and similar programs), which at 13 percent is one-fifth the size of Medicaid. Medicaid was the main driver of the 40 percent increase in total federal grants to states from 2008-17.

(See "Federal Spending Priorities Shifted Toward Health Over Past Decade.")

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Agenda for America

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Data-driven policymaking is not just a tool for finding new solutions for difficult challenges. When states serve their traditional role as laboratories of innovation, they increase the American people’s confidence that the government they choose—no matter the size—can be effective, responsive, and in the public interest.