One of Mississippi legislators’ most important jobs is to keep Medicaid alive beyond June 30, the end of the current state budget year. Medicaid is a health insurance program for the needy, aged, blind and disabled. It is paid by federal and state money. Because Mississippi is one of the poorest states in the nation, it receives the most generous portions of federal funding. The federal government currently pays 84.5% of Medicaid expenses in Mississippi. The next-largest federal share goes to West Virginia, at nearly 81%.