In this column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman analyzes the Kaiser Health Policy News Index to determine which health stories in the news have broken through to the public the most in the last year. One conclusion: it wasn’t the Affordable Care Act.
President Donald Trump and Republicans in Congress pursued several major efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) but were unable to get a bill through the U.S. Senate in 2017. In 2018, Congress did pass a tax bill that eliminated the ACA’s tax penalty for not obtaining health coverage beginning in 2019.
In December 2019, a federal appeals court panel ruled that the law’s individual mandate is unconstitutional since Congress has set the mandate tax penalty to zero and sent the case back to a lower court to determine how much of the rest of the ACA should be invalidated. The case was first brought by a number of Republican state attorneys general, and the Trump administration now argues that nearly all of the ACA should be overturned. The U.S. Supreme Court has now agreed to review the case.
For information about ACA Marketplace Open Enrollment, including fact sheets and 300+ FAQs, visit our collection of resources on Understanding Health Insurance.
Featured Affordable Care Act Resources
On December 14, 2018, a federal trial court judge ruled that the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) individual mandate is unconstitutional and that the entire law should be struck down as a result. This brief considers the complex and far-reaching impact were the entire law ultimately held to be invalid.
Fact Sheet See More
Related Affordable Care Act Resources
- Explaining Texas v. U.S.: A Guide to the Case Challenging the ACA
- The Past, Present, And Possible Future Of Public Opinion On The Affordable Care Act
- Republican Voters Have Moved On from Hating the ACA
- The Effects of Medicaid Expansion under the ACA: Updated Findings from a Literature Review
- FAQs: Health Insurance Marketplace and the ACA
- Status of State Medicaid Expansion Decisions: Interactive Map
- How ACA Marketplace Premiums Are Changing by County in 2020
- Insurer Participation on ACA Marketplaces, 2014-2020
- Pre-Existing Condition Prevalence for Individuals and Families
- Preventive Services Tracker
As unemployment claims skyrocket amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis, this analysis examines the potential loss of job-based coverage among people in families where someone lost employment between March 1 and May 2 and estimate their eligibility for ACA coverage as of May and January 2021, when most will have exhausted their unemployment benefits.
Issue Brief See More
- view as grid
- view as list
Factors Affecting States’ Ability to Respond to Federal Medicaid Cuts and Caps: Which States Are Most At Risk?
This issue brief examines the factors that could affect states’ ability to cope with reductions in federal Medicaid funding of the sort proposed in the House-passed American Health Care Act (AHCA), which would eliminate enhanced federal matching funds for the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion and convert Medicaid to a per capita cap or block grant system of financing.
In this brief, the Kaiser Family Foundation outlines 10 ways women could be affected under the House of Representatives’ American Health Care Act. In particular, the brief analyzes how changes might affect Medicaid and its expansion population, financial assistance in the individual insurance market, coverage for essential health benefits and preventive services such as contraception, abortion, and maternity care, as well as insurance reforms such as gender rating.
Medicaid Restructuring Under the American Health Care Act and Implications for Behavioral Health Care in the US
This brief outlines Medicaid’s role for people with behavioral health conditions and the implications of the American Health Care Act for these enrollees. It includes information on the potential impact of ending the enhanced federal financing for newly eligible adults, removing essential health benefits from state plan amendments, and converting federal Medicaid funding into a per capita cap.
Individual market insurers are expecting to return to consumers a record total of about $800 million in medical loss ratio rebates for 2018, a year in which the insurance companies posted their best annual financial performance under the Affordable Care Act to date. Financial results for 2018 suggest that insurers in the individual market are generally returning to or exceeding profitability levels seen before 2014, when ACA insurance market rules took effect, including the requirement to cover people with pre-existing conditions.
Explaining Texas v. U.S.: A Guide to the 5th Circuit Appeal in the Lawsuit Challenging the Affordable Care Act
The outcome of the Texas v. U.S. legal challenge to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) could have far-reaching consequences for the nation’s health system, from rolling back the expansion of Medicaid to removing protections for people with pre-existing conditions and revoking the ability of adult children to stay on their…
The debate among Democratic presidential candidates about how to reform the health care system largely boils down to whether to build on the Affordable Care Act and create an option for people to enroll in Medicare or create a Medicare for all plan that covers everyone. On the other side…
This analysis provides national estimates of insurance coverage among people with HIV and finds about 1 in 10 are uninsured, similar to the share among the general population following the ACA’s coverage expansions. Medicaid is the single largest source of coverage for people with HIV due to the ACA’s Medicaid expansion. The analysis also looks at access to Ryan White program services, and the impact of coverage and the Ryan White program on people with HIV’s ability to achieve sustained viral suppression.
Pre-existing Conditions and Medical Underwriting in the Individual Insurance Market Prior to the ACA
This brief reviews medical underwriting practices by private insurers in the individual health insurance market prior to 2014, and estimates how many American adults could face difficulty obtaining private individual market insurance because of a pre-existing condition if the Affordable Care Act (also known as Obamacare) were repealed or amended and such practices resumed.
Nearly 54 Million Americans Have Pre-Existing Conditions That Would Make Them Uninsurable in the Individual Market without the ACA
Almost Half of Non-Elderly Families have At Least One Adult with a Pre-Existing Condition An updated KFF analysis estimates that almost 54 million people – or 27% of all adults under 65 —have pre-existing health conditions that would likely have made them uninsurable in the individual markets that existed in…