A new study about emergency room use in Oregon is fueling the debate about whether expanding Medicaid as made possible under the Affordable Care Act leads to high emergency room use. To understand what the study says—and does not say—about the impact of Medicaid expansion, it’s important to keep in mind its limitations and consider data from other recent studies.
The 2016 elections will have profound implications for the health care advocacy landscape in the year to come.
Health Action 2017 – next February 16-18 – will take place against the backdrop of a new political environment. Washington will be adjusting to a changing of the guard as the new president is sworn in and a new Congress deliberates the direction of the future of health care.
Several important health equity victories coincided with Hispanic Heritage Month.
We got news that the Latino uninsured rate is lower than ever, there is more progress in immigrant access to health care in California and Illinois, and the federal government saved Ohio’s Medicaid program from harsh restrictions that would have cut access to health care for tens of thousands of people.
Click here for our monthly roundup of top new health equity resources, event, and jobs.
In addition to our monthly roundup of notable health equity news, we have compiled a list of our favorite new resources, events you should know about, and job openings.
New Health Equity Resources
CMS Rejects Ohio's Request for Harsh Policies in Its Medicaid Program, Dee Mahan and Erica Turret, Families USA
It’s been only two months since the Louisiana Medicaid expansion—dubbed Healthy Louisiana—went into effect, and already Louisianans are reaping the benefits.
New data show that Medicaid expansion has helped over 305,000 Bayou State residents get health coverage. But coverage through Healthy Louisiana means more than just an insurance card. New enrollees are using their coverage to get vital preventive care and treatment.
Oral health care is vital to a child’s overall health. This summer, the U.S. Treasury Department proposed a change in the rules for premium tax credits that, if adopted, will make children’s dental care more affordable.
With this decision, CMS is making it clear that policies that make it harder for the lowest-income people in the program to get health care are inconsistent with the goals of Medicaid. The decision also defined some boundaries regarding what is and is not appropriate for approval through the Medicaid waiver process.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently announced plans to implement a pilot project in 2017 that could change the enrollment process for some consumers seeking health coverage through special enrollment periods (SEPs). While details of the proposed pilot project are not finalized, Families USA is concerned that these changes could ultimately lead to fewer people enrolling in coverage.
Last month, Kentucky asked the federal government for approval to make significant and troubling changes to its highly successful Medicaid expansion program. To justify its request, the state asserted that these changes would help “break the cycle of poverty.” However, the results would likely be the opposite.
The fact is, by providing health insurance and helping people in the program avoid medical debt, Medicaid coverage can actually improve the financial health of its enrollees. Two recent reports, one in April and one in June, offer new evidence supporting that link.