Nonsequitur: Majority of New Obamacare Enrollees Will Be on Medicaid
December 12, 2013
The US Department of Health and Human Services has released enrollment numbers for the ACA federal and state marketplaces:
Nearly 1.2 million Americans, based only on the first two months of open enrollment, have selected a plan or had a Medicaid or CHIP eligibility determination; ◦Of those, 364,682 Americans selected plans from the state and federal Marketplaces; and ◦803,077 Americans were determined or assessed eligible for Medicaid or CHIP by the Health Insurance Marketplace. (Source: DHHS Press Release, 12/11/13)
This means that two thirds of new enrollees were added to Medicaid under the ACA’s broader eligibility guidelines. These folks will not be paying premiums or co-pays. This is why many currently insured will have to their policies changed or cancelled, and why everyone will be paying higher premiums, deductibles and/or co-pays. Those 800 K newly insured are not paying into the system, so others will have to make up for the costs now incurred by insurers (mostly for risk) to cover them.
Medicaid, of course, is partly funded by federal tax dollars and partly funded by state tax dollars. Unfortunately,
CBO estimates Medicare‘s Hospital Insurance Trust Fund will be financially insolvent in 2020, less than nine years from today. According to the 2011 Medicare Trustees‘ Report‘s worst-case scenario, the trust fund could be insolvent as early as 2016. The Trustees‘ report also notes the trust fund is expected to pay out more in benefits than it receives into its accounts from revenue in all future years. (Source: Medicaid/Medicare Report, Office of Senator Coburn, 2011)
The bottom line is that the ACA’s tax rebates to individuals and families, and Medicaid’s dispersal of federal dollars to states will NOT cover the actual costs to individuals, families and local governments. We will all be paying much more for healthcare, either directly as consumers or indirectly as taxpayers.