- Adults younger than 65 who are minorities, poor and have a lower level of education are more likely to lose their insurance coverage than those with employer-sponsored insurance if Congress were to repeal parts of the ACA or modify it, according to a research letter published in JAMA Internal Medicine on Friday.
- Researchers divided the impacted adults who purchased insurance under the ACA into three groups: those that earn an income below 400% of the federal poverty level (FPL); those without children that have incomes below 138% FPL who are newly eligible and covered by Medicaid; and Medicaid patients who are in families with children, did not receive disability income, and have incomes 50% to 138% FPL.
Part of the 2015 National Health Interview Survey was used for the analysis, which compared the socioeconomic traits, chronic disease rates and the healthcare use of adults at risk of loosing coverage versus those covered by employer-sponsored insurance.
While the conversations around repealing the ACA has largely focused on the consumer market, particularly on those with pre-existing conditions, the new research provides a detailed snapshot of who exactly are the individuals that are most at risk of losing coverage. It adds to the myriad of reports that have been released just in the past few months about the highly detrimental impact a repeal-and-replace of the ACA could have on different sectors within the healthcare industry, especially if both actions don't occur simultaneously.
A report from the Congressional Budget Office, published earlier this week, shows that approximately 18 million Americans would lose their insurance coverage during the first year if Congress were to eliminate Medicaid expansions and eliminate ACA subsidies. Republicans have already taken big steps to be able to being the repeal process, such as last week's approval of a budget resolution. But they have yet to reach consensus on what would be their replacement coverage plan.
With a substantially larger number of uninsured Americans, hospitals and health systems all across the U.S. will likely face major financial stress that could lead them to cut jobs and cost them $165.8 billion in federal payments through 2026, a recent analysis by Dobson DaVanso concluded. This isn't a pretty outlook, especially in light of a new poll by Medical Group Management Association Stat, which found that 30% of medical practices were unable to meet their revenue goals last year.
Healthcare facilities, already dealing with financial struggles partly due to policy changes, will find it increasingly difficult to manage their budgets in this fast-changing landscape.