Health Care Law Helps Add 3 Million to Medicaid

By Erica Werner, Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) – Three million Americans signed up for Medicaid under President Barack Obama’s new health care law as of the end of February, the administration announced on April 4, offering its first full accounting of how much the safety net health program has grown since implementation of the law. Many were newly eligible because of the law’s Medicaid expansion, while others already eligible but not yet enrolled came forward because of publicity around the …

The Cost of Not Expanding Medicaid

States have divided almost evenly on whether to expand Medicaid to millions more low-income Americans, many of them uninsured. Many Republican governors or state legislatures have rejected expansion, saying that although the federal government will pick up most of the tab now, states could be left on the hook in the future. Sign up for the AARP Health Newsletter And although expansion aims for low-income people, “you’re expanding coverage for graduate students and Starbucks baristas,” says Edmund Haislmaier, senior research fellow at the Heritage …

Study: 5.2 Million Americans Will Fall Into Medicaid ‘Coverage Gap’

By Phil Galewitz, Kaiser Health News About 5.2 million poor, uninsured adults will fall into the “coverage gap,” created by 26 states choosing not to expand Medicaid under the federal health law next year, according to a study released today by the Kaiser Family Foundation. (Kaiser Health News is an editorially independent program of the foundation.) Sign up for the AARP Health Newsletter These people are projected to have incomes too high to qualify for their state’s existing Medicaid programs, but below the federal poverty …

In These States, Hospitals and Patients Could Be in for a Rough Ride

Hospitals and health-care systems in the 21 states that aren’t expanding Medicaid, the health program for low-income Americans, may be in for an especially rough financial ride. With hospitals in those states facing the prospect of providing even more uncompensated care, Bloomberg.com says, the municipal bonds they put up for sale may very well have diminished appeal. As Bloomberg’s Brian Chappatta explains: “Health-care related bonds are already posting the biggest losses among revenue debt in the $3.7 trillion municipal market, …

The Costs of Not Expanding Medicaid

I generally don’t like to tell people that I majored in economics in college, because – the painful truth be told – there’s not a lot that I actually remember about “the dismal science.” One of the few things I do remember, however, is the concept of “opportunity cost.” That’s the name economists give to the cost of not doing something. Which brings us, in today’s lesson, to Medicaid, the government-sponsored health insurance program for certain groups of low-income Americans. …

Those Left Out of Medicaid Expansion Won’t Be Penalized … Or Insured

By Alvin Tran, Kaiser Health News Low-income Americans who live in states that have decided not to expand Medicaid eligibility will not face penalties if they fail to buy insurance next year. Discussion: 78 million consumers saved $3.4 billion on ACA-provisioned health insurance That’s according to a final rule on exemptions to the health law’s individual mandate – the law’s controversial requirement that most Americans have health coverage or pay a penalty in 2014. That rule was published Wednesday. The health …