Emergency Rooms as a Measuring Tape
First it was Massachusetts and its stat on emergency room use: E.R. visits declined when the state's universal health insurance initiative fell into place. ...
First it was Massachusetts and its stat on emergency room use: E.R. visits declined when the state's universal health insurance initiative fell into place. As more people had access to physicians, they stopped dropping by the emergency room for coughs, colds and sprained ankles.
Now we have the obverse of that report. In 2003, the Oregon Health Plan (a Medicaid expansion program) was forced to cut back on its benefits. Bottom line: Enrollment was cut in half, with 50,000 beneficiaries dropped from the program. Emergency rooms have felt the effect of that cause. A recent study that ran in the Annals of Emergency Medicine found that the restriction of Medicaid eligibility was associated with an increase in emergency-department visits by uninsured patients, without an increase in overall emergency-department volume.
Nothing happens in a vacuum when it comes to Medicaid. "Policymakers contemplating changes to insurance eligibility," the report noted, "need to consider the risk to patients and the clinical and financial burden placed on hospitals and EDs as a result of these decisions."
Join the Discussion
After you comment, click Post. You can enter an anonymous Display Name or connect to a social profile.
The Week in Public Finance: Taxes, Drought and a Nod to the Baha Men2 days ago
How Data Can Improve Transit Efficiency2 days ago
Fresno Deputy Police Chief Arrested on Drug Charges2 days ago
States Trying to Figure Out Whether Entertainment Tax Credits Really Work2 days ago
Chris Christie Rails Against Estate Taxes New Jersey Needs2 days ago
Public Defender: San Francisco Jail Guards Forced Inmates to Fight Each Other2 days ago