KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Impact Of Medicaid Expansion Would Vary By State, According To Study

The analysis released Monday explored how some states would experience savings while others would see cost increases as a result of the health law's plan to expand Medicaid.

Kaiser Health News: Capsules: Study: States Face Increased Medicaid Costs Even If They Don't Expand Program
If state officials think they can escape a fiscal quagmire by refusing to expand Medicaid under the federal health law, they might want to reconsider. State Medicaid costs will jump $76 billion, or nearly 3 percent, over the next decade if all 50 states decide to expand Medicaid eligibility in 2014 under the federal health law. But state spending on the program would still increase to the tune of $68 billion even if not a single one opts for the expansion, according to a study released Monday by the Kaiser Family Foundation. (KHN is an editorially independent program of the foundation.) (Galewitz, 11/26).

Modern Healthcare: For States, Impact Of Medicaid Expansion Would Vary: Study
Some states would see savings while others would experience cost increases as a result of the health reform law's provision to expand Medicaid, according to a report from the Kaiser Family Foundation (PDF). As states consider whether to expand their Medicaid programs—based on the Supreme Court's ruling this past summer that gives them this option—the new analysis shows Medicaid spending would increase by about $1.03 trillion between 2013 and 2022, with federal spending rising by $952 billion, or about 26%, and state spending increasing by $76 billion, or less than 3%, over that period (Zigmond, 11/26).

CQ HealthBeat: States Face Higher Medicaid Costs Even If They Don't Expand Program, Kaiser Report Finds
State officials who are hoping to avoid high Medicaid costs from the health care law by not expanding the program might be in for an unpleasant discovery: Other Medicaid-related mandates in the overhaul will mean higher state spending regardless of whether a state expands, according to a state-by-state analysis the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation released Monday. The report shows that if all states expand coverage, as allowed under the 2010 health care law, they would collectively spend $76 billion more from 2013 to 2022 on Medicaid than if the measure had never been enacted. That's only about $8 billion more than states would pay under the law if none of them expand (Adams, 11/26).

The Hill: Study: Medicaid Expansion Is Cheap For States
Republican governors are under enormous pressure not to expand their Medicaid programs, as conservatives look for any way to undermine the Affordable Care Act now that it has survived the Supreme Court as well as the 2012 election. Nearly every Republican governor has rejected the expansion, citing the additional costs to state governments that are still recovering from the recession. But according to the new Kaiser analysis, states' additional costs would be small (Baker, 11/26).

The Associated Press/Washington Post: Report Says States Can Get More Than $9 From Feds For Every $1 They Spend To Expand Medicaid
States will receive more than $9 in federal money for every $1 they spend to cover low-income residents under President Barack Obama's health care law, according to a nonpartisan analysis released Monday. Expanding Medicaid to cover about 20 million more low-income people will cost over $1 trillion nationally from 2013 to 2022, said the joint report from the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Urban Institute (11/26).

CNN: Medicaid: States Turning Down Free Money, Group Says
Since the Supreme Court ruled that states cannot be forced to participate, eight states have said they won't expand their current Medicaid programs, and several others say they may follow suit. But the KFF report says those states may be making life unnecessarily hard for their poorest citizens. Why? Let's start with the basics: The cost of Medicaid is currently shared by states and the federal government, with Washington picking up a little more than half the bill. Under Obamacare, the feds would carry a much heavier load: 100% of new costs for the first three years, 95% starting in 2017 and 90% in 2020 and beyond (Hellerman, 11/26).

News outlets also report on how specific states fare in the calculations.

The Denver Post: Medicaid Expansion Could Cost Colorado $858 Million Over 10 Years
The state's share of costs for expanding Medicaid rolls under federal health-care reform could be $858 million over 10 years, according to new estimates from the Kaiser Family Foundation. The analysts still consider the price a bargain for Colorado and other states that want to bring health insurance to hundreds of thousands of low-income residents (Booth, 11/26).

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Study: Medicaid Expansion Would Bring Georgia $33B
Expanding Georgia's massive Medicaid health care program would cost the state roughly $2.5 billion over a decade, while providing half a million poor, uninsured Georgians with coverage, a new study estimates. Under a Medicaid expansion — a pillar of the Affordable Care Act — the federal government would pay 100 percent of the costs for newly eligible enrollees the first few years, though that would later fall to 90 percent. The result: more than $33 billion in new federal money would flood into Georgia over a 10-year period, according to the study released Monday by the nonprofit Kaiser Family Foundation (Williams, 11/27).

Georgia Health News: Report Takes New Look At Medicaid Expansion Costs
A new study has estimated that Georgia's 10-year cost of expanding Medicaid under the health reform law would be $1.8 billion. Only five states – California, Texas, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida – would face a higher cost, the report said. The Georgia increase would represent a 4.1 percent hike in Medicaid spending through the year 2022, according to the analysis, conducted by the Urban Institute and released Monday by the Kaiser Family Foundation (Miller, 11/26).

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