The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on Friday announced that 3 million poor Americans had signed up for Medicaid during the first enrollment period of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which ended March 31. HHS did not say how many of the 3 million were former recipients just resigning up.

The current data includes people who qualify for Medicaid programs that have existed for decades.

"The increase in Medicaid enrollments across the country is encouraging," HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said in a government blog posting.

The ACA offered expanded Medicaid funding to states that chose to participate, but only about half the states (26, to be exact) actually accepted the offer once the Supreme Court ruled the feds couldn't force them to expand the program.

Medicaid has traditionally been funded largely by the federal government but administered by the states.