Anne L. Schwartz Explains Data on Newly-Eligible Medicaid Enrollees

Anne L. Schwartz, PhD, executive director of the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission, explains the core messages of new data on average spending for new Medicaid enrollees.

Anne L. Schwartz, PhD, executive director of the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission, explains the core messages of new data on average spending for new Medicaid enrollees.

Transcript

In December, MACSTATS included, for the first time, state-by-state enrollment and benefit spending for adults who became eligible for Medicaid under the Patient Protection and the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Can you explain the key takeaways?

We don’t have a pre-ACA information on this population because they were not covered under the Medicaid program. So, we are pleased to have for the first time data at the state level of what the average spending for these enrollees is. There are really 2 core messages. One is there is a lot of variation across state in what per enrollee spending is for the new adult group and some of that reflects differences in prices across geographic areas. It’s very expensive to provide care in Alaska less so than in other states. That’s similar to what you see in other aspects of the program.

The other thing that you see is that spending per enrollee for the new adult group is in practically every state much lower than spending on average for all the other Medicaid enrollees and that is perhaps not a surprising finding because much of the Medicaid population is sick, chronic conditions, significant disabilities, and therefore use a considerable amount of medical long-term services and supports.