|January 25, 2012||
From Health Affairs
Massachusetts Health Reform: How It Fared In 2010
Bethesda, MD -- Massachusettss health reform bill, which provided the template for the federal Affordable Care Act, went into effect in 2006. In a statewide survey taken in 2010, 94.2 percent of the states nonelderly (1964) residents reported being covered, a significant increase over the 86.6 percent estimate of 2006.
The survey also showed first-time reductions in emergency department visits and hospital inpatient stays as well as improvements in self-reported health status. At the same time, there was a significant increase in premium costs paid by workers, reflecting Massachusetts decision to put off efforts to address lowering health care costs in the 2006 legislation. The study was released today as a Web First by Health Affairs and will appear in the journals February 2012 issue.
To obtain the 2010 data, the authors conducted a randomly sampled telephone survey of approximately 3,000 nonelderly adults in the state. With a 39 percent response rate, the sample included households with cell phones as well as landlines. The authors compared the 2010 data with previous annual surveys from 2006 through 2009.
Some other key findings:
Just as Massachusettss 2006 health reform legislation provided the template for the Affordable Care Act...the states experience under that legislation provides an example of the potential gains under federal health reform, concluded the authors. It is likely that the path to near-universal coverage nationally will be slower and bumpier than it was for Massachusetts in 2006. Yet the findings for Massachusetts are a reminder that major gains in coverage and associated benefits are possible.
|About Health Affairs|
Health Affairs is the leading journal at the intersection of health, health care, and policy. Published by Project HOPE, the peer-reviewed journal appears each month in print, with additional Web First papers published periodically and health policy briefs published twice monthly at www.healthaffairs.org. You can also find the journal on Facebook and Twitter. Read daily perspectives on Health Affairs Blog. Download weekly Narrative Matters podcasts on iTunes.