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Medicaid expansion and the ER


This Health Affairs article looks at how uninsured adults’ share of physician and emergency room visits has fallen in states that expended Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. The authors note:

“There is growing evidence that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has helped to reduce the number of uninsured adults, particularly in states that implemented the ACA’s Medicaid expansions. Research has also begun to show how the ACA’s changes in coverage are altering the way U.S. health care is financed. In a recent Health Affairs article, for example, Sayeh Nikpay and coauthors use data from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) Hospital Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP) to show declines in the share of hospitalizations that are uninsured, and increases in the Medicaid share, in states that expanded Medicaid.”

They continued: {I}n states that expanded Medicaid, the share of emergency room visits by uninsured individuals declined from 19.8 percent in 2011-13 to 10.5 percent in 2014. The public coverage share in those states rose from 22.2 percent in 2011-13 to 34.8 percent in 2014. Once again, we did not observe similar changes in non-expansion states.”

To read the Health Affairs report, please hit this link.



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