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Member Research and Reports

Member Research and Reports

Minnesota Study Finds California’s Early ACA Expansion Increased Coverage and Reduced Out-of-Pocket Spending for Low-income Population

A recent University of Minnesota School of Public Health study found when California counties implemented public insurance expansion, rates of public health insurance coverage, and overall insurance coverage (i.e. insurance, regardless of source), went up significantly.

Ezra-GolbersteinMinnesota
[Photo: Dr. Ezra Golberstein]

Rates of public insurance rose by over seven percentage points, and rates of any insurance rose by almost six percentage points. Furthermore, they found out-of-pocket health care spending dropped after counties implemented the insurance expansion.

The study was published in Health Affairs.

“This study adds to the evidence that Medicaid expansions are a really important, and effective, way that the ACA reduces uninsurance, “ said Dr. Ezra Golberstein, University of Minnesota School of Public Health assistant professor and lead author of the study.

Researchers used restricted data from the National Health Interview Survey to examine the impact of California’s Low Income Health Program, an early expansion program that began in 2011.

“Every state is different when it comes to Medicaid expansions,” said Dr. Golberstein. “Some states will probably see bigger effects on coverage, access, and protection from out-of-pocket spending than other states. It is important to understand what factors contribute to the success of these expansions.”