Experts Predict Most States Will Participate in Medicaid Expansion
During a Politico Pro event on Thursday, several health policy experts predicted that most governors ultimately will decide to participate in the Affordable Care Act's Medicaid expansion because of the possibility that medical practices could decide to close, Politico reports.
Details of Remarks
Gail Wilensky -- a CMS administrator during the George H.W. Bush administration -- said she believes states that initially opt out of the expansion will reverse course in the coming years because of the promise of federal funding, which would cover 100% of expansion costs for the first several years. "Historically, when the match is high enough, the states come in," she said.
Dan Mendelson, president of Avalere Health, also said he believes states will change their minds about opting out of the expansion, adding that the economic effect of the matching federal Medicaid funds will "overtake the politics."
Umbdenstock Is Less Optimistic
Meanwhile, American Hospital Association President Rich Umbdenstock said states that opt out of the expansion could force safety-net facilities to face "devastating" spending cuts (Cheney, Politico, 11/29).However, Umbdenstock indicated that he was less optimistic than Mendelson and Wilensky about states changing course on the expansion. He said there is little chance that all states would participate in the expansion after the Supreme Court struck down the penalties for opting out, according to Modern Healthcare (Daly, Modern Healthcare, 11/29). 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.