Many state legislatures are passing the midpoint for 2018 sessions, and trends are emerging in their efforts to tackle health care affordability and coverage. States are also reacting to federal activity around Medicaid and private market coverage including the repeal of the individual mandate. Below are some of the noteworthy state health legislative measures already moving this year.
Iowa has asked the federal government to approve a proposal to make troubling changes to its marketplace that will increase coverage costs for low- and middle-income Iowans. It essentially takes federal funds intended to help people afford the cost of health insurance and uses them to pay insurance companies and to offer subsidies to relatively high-income people. The risky and harmful proposal fails to meet key requirements and should be rejected.
With a new president and Congress, the health care gains made throughout the last six years face their greatest threat yet. Congress has voted more than 60 times to roll back the historic progress that has been made to expand health coverage to millions of people in this country and to improve coverage for those who already had it. These proposed changes will put the health—and lives—of countless Iowans at risk. Here’s what Iowa stands to lose if the new president and Congress move forward to upend our health care system:
This is the first in a series of analyses that examines the impact of efforts by conservative states to use Section 1115 waivers to modify their Medicaid expansions. Our analysis uses data these states report to CMS. First up: How charging Medicaid patients premiums hurts their care and state budgets.
In 2014, Iowa accepted federal funds to provide health insurance to more low-income residents through Medicaid. Medicaid expansion gives Iowa residents with incomes below 138 percent of the federal poverty level ($27,720 for a family of three in 2015) the chance to enroll in affordable health insurance. Our analysis finds that 68 percent of those who stand to gain health coverage because of Medicaid expansion are working.
States that expand Medicaid are making high-quality health coverage available to many hard-working people who would not otherwise have insurance. These individuals don’t qualify for regular Medicaid but cannot afford private health insurance. We looked at data from 11 states that have expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act and found that the majority of residents who can benefit from expanded Medicaid are employed.
The Supreme Court, in the King v. Burwell case, will soon decide whether millions of people in 34 states will lose premium tax credits they rely on to make health insurance affordable. Without those tax credits, most of the people affected would be unable to buy insurance and would become uninsured.
Our infographic series show how many people would lose their premium tax credits in every congressional district in the 34 states that did not establish their own marketplace.
When states don’t extend Medicaid, Americans are hit the hardest. Our brief compares two neighboring states, Missouri and Iowa. Iowa has extended Medicaid coverage, but Missouri has not.
On April 29, Families USA released a report that profiles two residents in neighboring states: Iowa, which chose to accept federal funds to extend health coverage to more adults through Medicaid, and Missouri, which has rejected federal funds to do the same. Our report shows how a state’s choice to extend health coverage can make a real difference in people’s lives. It also shows that if a state chooses not to extend coverage, that choice is not only a great injustice—it threatens access to care for Americans who need affordable, quality health care.