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Archive for Affordable Care Act

 

Behavioral Health Services in Medicaid Expansion States

The U.S. Government Accountability Office has performed a limited study of the utilization of Medicaid behavioral health services in Medicaid expansion states. The study, based on data from New York, Washington, Iowa, and West Virginia, found that the two most heavily utilized behavioral health services were diagnostic and psychotherapy services and that more than two-thirds of behavioral health patients were prescribed anti-depressants.  More people sought help for mental health challenges that for substance abuse problems. Medicaid officials in the selected states concluded that enrollment in Medicaid enhanced access to behavioral health care. Learn more about the study’s findings in the [&hellip

Urban Hospitals and Community Needs Assessments

A new study evaluates the degree to which non-profit urban hospitals are addressing the issue of health inequities in their Affordable Care Act-mandated community needs assessments. The assessments are part of a requirement for hospitals to retain their tax-exempt status, and the study examined the community needs assessments of 179 hospitals in 28 cities to identify how many explicitly or implicitly address health equity concerns.  The study also determined how many outlined future hospital strategies designed to address health equity issues. All private, non-profit urban safety-net hospitals are subject to this requirement. Learn more about how hospitals are responding to [&hellip

Hospital Uncompensated Care Down

As was surely expected, reforms introduced through implementation of the Affordable Care Act have driven down uncompensated care costs for many hospitals. How much? A new study published by the Commonwealth Fund offers the following findings: uncompensated care declines in expansion states are substantial relative to profit margins; for every dollar of uncompensated care costs hospitals in expansion states had in 2013, the Affordable Care Act erased 41 cents by 2015; and Medicaid expansion reduced uncompensated care burdens for safety-net hospitals that are not made whole by Medicaid disproportionate share payments (Medicaid DSH). Learn more, including how the decline in [&hellip

More Insured Didn’t Affect Access

When the Affordable Care Act was debated and then passed, some observers questioned whether the health care system had enough providers to care for the millions of additional people who would be gaining coverage through the reform law.  In particular, some worried that those who already had insurance would find their access to care reduced because of the new, increased demand for care among the newly insured. Those fears appear to have been groundless.  In a new study published in the journal Health Affairs, researchers concluded that  …we found no consistent evidence that increases in the proportion of adults with [&hellip

Health Reform Helps Hospitals in Medicaid Expansion States

The Affordable Care Act’s enhancement of access to health insurance, whether through Medicaid expansion or the subsidization of insurance premiums for working-class and some middle-class Americans, has improved the financial health of hospitals. Especially hospitals in Medicaid expansion states. According to a new report from the Urban Institute, Using data through fiscal year 2015, this new analysis finds that the Medicaid expansion under the ACA increased Medicaid revenue by $5.0 million per hospital, reduced costs of uncompensated care by $3.2 million per hospital, and improved average operating margins by 2.5 percentage points. This study also finds that the financial benefits [&hellip

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