1.1M to 1.8M Enrolled in Medicaid Because of ACA, Study Finds
Between one million and two million U.S. residents enrolled in Medicaid last year for reasons associated with the Affordable Care Act, according to an Avalere Health study released Wednesday, the Washington Post reports.
Study Details, Findings
For the study, Avalere compared Medicaid enrollment figures released by the Obama administration with the average monthly number of applications that were submitted during three months in the summer of 2013.
The analysis showed an estimated 1.1 million to 1.8 million people enrolled in Medicaid from October 2013 to December 2013 because of the ACA.
According to the study, the remaining enrollees were part of the normal flow of people who churn on and off of the program as their incomes change.
The estimates are lower than the 6.3 million Medicaid enrollees recently touted by the Obama administration. The administration has said that its figure includes people who have renewed their Medicaid coverage, as well as newly enrolled individuals. The administration's figure also includes people who had been eligible for Medicaid before the program's expansion under the ACA (Somashekhar/Sun, Washington Post, 2/5).
Further, the study estimates that around five million people will enroll in Medicaid coverage by the end of 2014, which is below a Congressional Budget Office estimate that eight million people will enroll in the program by the year's end (Ritger, National Journal, 2/5).
HHS spokesperson Joanne Peters did not directly address the study's specific findings, but said, "We're thrilled that since October , millions of Americans have enrolled in health insurance coverage," including "more than [six] million [people who] learned they were eligible for Medicaid and [CHIP], including new determinations in states expanding coverage as well as those made based on prior law and renewals."
Meanwhile, some Medicaid experts said they are skeptical of Avalere's study because it did not account for seasonal variations.
However, Judith Solomon, vice president of health policy at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, said Avalere's numbers likely were more accurate than the figure reported by the administration (Washington Post, 2/5).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.