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State Fiscal Conditions and Medicaid: 2014 Update

This issue brief provides an overview of Medicaid financing, Medicaid’s role in state budgets, the relationship between Medicaid and the economy and how the ACA and the Medicaid expansion could affect state budgets.

The Affordable Care Act’s Impact on Medicaid Eligibility, Enrollment, and Benefits for People with Disabilities

Medicaid is an important source of health insurance coverage for people with disabilities. This issue brief explains how Medicaid eligibility and benefits for people with disabilities are affected by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) rules as of 2014. Marketplace rules are discussed to the extent that they relate to Medicaid eligibility determinations for people with disabilities.

How Will the Uninsured Fare Under the Affordable Care Act?

This report explains how the ACA expands coverage nationally, including a breakdown of how many uninsured people are eligible for Medicaid, how many are eligible for financial assistance to help them buy private insurance in the new Marketplace and how many will not receive any financial assistance at all. The report also details, in specific dollar figures, the income levels at which people are eligible for Medicaid or financial assistance in the Marketplace. For states not expanding Medicaid, the report quantifies how many uninsured people fall into the “coverage gap,” meaning they will be ineligible for financial assistance in the Marketplace or for Medicaid in their state despite having an income below the federal poverty level.

Kaiser Health Tracking Poll: April 2014

Despite the news that 8 million people have signed up for health insurance through the ACA’s new marketplaces, the April Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds no change in overall opinion of the law since last month . The most common reason for remaining uninsured is not being able to find an affordable plan. Also, a majority of the public supports the ACA’s requirement that private health insurance plans cover the full cost of birth control and believes that for-profit companies should be subject to this requirement even if their owners object to birth control on religious grounds.

Connecting Consumers to Coverage: Lessons Learned from Assisters for Successful Outreach and Enrollment

This brief highlights the experiences of Navigators and other Marketplace consumer assistance programs under the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) in conducting outreach and providing enrollment assistance during the ACA’s first open enrollment period. It provides insight into the outreach and enrollment strategies the assisters developed and identifies the keys to successfully overcoming the challenges of the first year. These insights are based on findings from focus groups with assisters in four cities: Miami, Florida; Houston, Texas; Raleigh, North Carolina; and Cleveland, Ohio.

Low-Wage Workers Feel the Pinch on Health Insurance

In this column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman explores how low-wage firms and their workers are faring in the employer-based health insurance market and how the Affordable Care Act may influence future trends.

The Health-Cost Problem Is Coming Back

Drew Altman, in The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, discusses how the conversation will soon shift back to health-care costs from health coverage, because they are rising more sharply again. And as the discussion turns back, he says that because there is no national agreement on a strategy to address increasing costs, current efforts in the public and private sector, however fragmented and uncoordinated, will need to step up their game.

The Twin Goals of Health Insurance

Drew Altman, in The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, examines a study finding Massachusetts’ health reform saved lives in the context of health insurance’s twin goal: better access to improve health and economic security.

The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation Headquarters: 2400 Sand Hill Road, Menlo Park, CA 94025 | Phone 650-854-9400
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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.