Prior to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), health care safety-net programs were the primary source of care for over 44 million uninsured people. While the ACA cut the number of uninsured substantially, about 30 million people remain uninsured, and many millions more are vulnerable to out-of-pocket costs beyond their resources. The need for the safety net remains, even as the distribution and types of need have shifted. This brief reviews the effects of the ACA on the funding and operation of safety-net institutions. It highlights the challenges and opportunities that health care reform presents to safety-net programs, and how they have adapted and evolved to continue to serve our most vulnerable residents.
[cross-posted from the United States of Care blog]
Imagine being discharged from the hospital to a two-room apartment badly in need of repair. Your electricity has been cut off and you can barely remember the discharge instructions. You were told to see a specialist in a week, but it will take you 90 minutes one-way on public transportation to get there. Confused about follow-up and juggling the complexities of life, what do you do?
[cross posted from the PolicyLab blog]
Abstract [from journal]
Primary care access in Medicaid improved after the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act despite millions of new beneficiaries. One possible explanation is that practices are scheduling more appointments with advanced practitioners. To test this theory, we used data from a secret shopper study in which callers simulated new Medicaid patients and requested appointments with 3,742 randomly selected primary care practices in 10 states. Conditional on scheduling an appointment, simulated patients asked whether the practitioner...
ABSTRACT [FROM JOURNAL]
We provide empirical evidence on the relative importance of specific observable factors that can explain why individuals enrolled in both Medicare and Medicaid (duals) are concentrated in lower quality nursing homes, relative to those not on Medicaid. Descriptive results show that duals are 9.7 percentage points more likely than nonduals to be admitted to a low-quality (1-2 stars) nursing home. Using the Blinder–Oaxaca decomposition approach in a multivariate framework, we find that 35.4% of the difference in admission to low-quality nursing homes can be...
To help the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services understand the likely impact of a proposed Medicaid work requirement, we analyzed the demographic, economic and health characteristics of working-age, non-disabled adults who receive Medicaid, and any issues or barriers this population may face in obtaining and maintaining employment.
States are considered “laboratories of democracy,” allowing experimentation with innovative reforms that could potentially be adopted at the national level. To test new approaches in their Medicaid programs, states have embraced Section 1115 waivers, which permit innovations that do not meet federal program rules, but still promote the program’s objectives.