If the U.S. Supreme Court hadn't made the Affordable Care Act's Medicaid expansion a state-based decision in its ruling two years ago, an additional 3 million consumers would have been able to enroll in Medicaid plans, according to new data from Enroll America and data analytics group Civis. The data was analyzed by and reported in The New York Times.
Many Republican governors opted not to expand Medicaid, a particularly prevalent decision in Southern states like Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. Mississippi and Louisiana are the poorest states in the country, and more than 15 percent of their residents between 18 and 65 years old are uninsured, the data show.
But it's not just the South that is blocking its uninsured residents from obtaining Medicaid coverage. Large pockets of people across Idaho, Wyoming and Maine also remain uninsured.
Despite missing out on 3 million additional members, Medicaid has been successful in providing affordable insurance to disadvantaged populations. The Enroll America/Civis data show that blacks and Hispanics; young adults; people living in rural areas; women; and low-income individuals have benefited the most from the program's expansion.
What's more, the ACA has helped more than 10 million people obtain health insurance, and the uninsured rate for non-elderly adults decreased by 26 points, The Times noted.
And depending the outcome of today's midterm elections, another 1.7 million people could be eligible for Medicaid expansion. Medicaid was a key campaign issue throughout many state legislative and gubernatorial campaigns, and recent headlines suggest payers eyeing Medicaid profits hope for Democratic victories, FierceHealthPayer previously reported.
To learn more:
- read The New York Times article