• Benefits of Medicaid Expansion
  • November 9, 2012 | Author: Karen A. Daley
  • Law Firm: Pullman & Comley, LLC - Bridgeport Office
  • Readers will recall that the United States Supreme Court refused to allow Congress to penalize the states if they did not accept the expansion of Medicaid coverage to individuals with incomes above the federal poverty level. An article in the July 25, 2012 issue of The New England Journal of Medicine attempted “to predict health benefits from this measure by examining outcomes in three states that have enacted similar Medicaid expansions” prior to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. As Dr. Abigail Zuger notes in the September 15, 2012 issue of Journal Watch, a publication of the New England Journal of Medicine, “adjusted all-cause mortality in the Medicaid-expansion states (New York, Arizona, and Maine) declined by 6.1% in the 5 years after expansion . . . .” All-cause mortality was studied for the states used as controls in the study.

    Dr. Zuger notes that while conventional wisdom sees Medicaid coverage as being associated with poor health outcomes for adults, the referenced study appears to underscore the opposite.

    Against this backdrop, it is difficult to determine why the governors of many states announced their refusal to permit the access of their newly Medicaid eligible citizens to better health care - especially when the federal government will be paying for it during the first several years.