Analysis: The Real Number Of People Enrolled In Medicaid Because Of ACA

Amid a heated debate between the White House and conservatives over how much credit Obamacare can take for enrolling people in Medicaid, a new analysis has an answer: up to 1.8 million.

The White House has touted a bigger number, 6.3 million, which included people who were just renewing their enrollment. Critics said that was misleading; the law can only take credit for those who enrolled because their state expanded the program’s eligibility or who were never enrolled but had now after the big sign-up push that accompanied Obamacare’s launch.

Avalere Health, an independent consulting firm, estimated that between 1.1 and 1.8 million people have enrolled in Medicaid because of Obamacare. They either qualified through the law’s expansion of the program, which 25 states adopted, or because they were already eligible but hadn’t enrolled until Obamacare enrollment started on Oct. 1.

The 25 states that expanded Medicaid under Obamacare have, as expected, enrolled many more Americans in the program than those that didn’t. Using the 1.8 million estimate, the expanding states signed up 1.3 million people, while the 25 non-expanding states enrolled 500,000.

“The data illustrate early upticks in Medicaid enrollment, skewing toward expansion states, as we would expect,” Caroline Pearson, vice president of Avalere Health, said in a statement.

Avalere attempted to parse the numbers and decipher how many of the 6.3 million should be credited to Obamacare. The full methodology is available here, but the starting point was comparing the monthly number of applications filed since October with the number of applications filed per month before Obamacare launched.

Dear Reader,

When we asked recently what makes TPM different from other outlets, readers cited factors like honesty, curiosity, transparency, and our vibrant community. They also pointed to our ability to report on important stories and trends long before they are picked up by mainstream outlets; our ability to contextualize information within the arc of history; and our focus on the real-world consequences of the news.

Our unique approach to reporting and presenting the news, however, wouldn’t be possible without our readers’ support. That’s not just marketing speak, it’s true: our work would literally not be possible without readers deciding to become members. Not only does member support account for more than 80% of TPM’s revenue, our members have helped us build an engaged and informed community. Many of our best stories were born from reader tips and valuable member feedback.

We do what other news outlets can’t or won’t do because our members’ support gives us real independence.

If you enjoy reading TPM and value what we do, become a member today.

Latest Livewire
Comments
Masthead Masthead
Founder & Editor-in-Chief:
Executive Editor:
Managing Editor:
Associate Editor:
Investigations Desk:
Reporters:
Newswriters:
Director of Audience:
Editor at Large:
General Counsel:
Publisher:
Head of Product:
Director of Technology:
Associate Publisher:
Front End Developer:
Senior Designer: