The White House Council of Economic Advisers has released a report, Missed Opportunities: The Consequences of State Decisions not to Expand Medicaid, analyzing several consequences of States’ decisions not to expand Medicaid. None of the nine deep south states (AL, GA, FL, LA, MS, NC, SC, TN, TX) targeted by the Southern HIV/AIDS Strategy Initiative (SASI) have expanded Medicaid despite having the highest rates of new HIV and AIDS diagnoses and the highest HIV case related fatality rates in the country. See: HIV/AIDS in the Southern US: Trends from 2008-2011 Show a Consistent Disproportionate Epidemic.
If all states expanded Medicaid, the Report finds that people would have improved access to care, better health outcomes, and greater financial security. States would receive the economic benefits of addtional federal funds, more job creation and greater overall economic activity.
Impact on 9 deep south states: According to the White House report, if the nine deep south states expanded Medicaid, by 2016:
- More than $65 billion in increased Federal spending would come to the deep south states alone;
- Four million additional people in the deep south states would have insurance coverage;
- More than 153,000 women would get mammograms and more than 245,000 women would get pap smears in a 12-month period;
- Deep south residents would have more than 10 million additional physician visits each year;
- More than 950,000 additional deep south residents would have a regular doctor; and
- Almost 180,000 fewer people in the deep south would face catastrophic medical costs in a typical year.
The White House report provides further compelling evidence that State decisions not to expand Medicaid are significant contributors to the widening disparities in health care access, health care outcomes, and financial security faced by those in the deep south and other non-Medicaid expansion states.