King v. Burwell Decision Could Exacerbate Disparities in the US

Although the decision in King v. Burwell will not directly affect states that have set up their own health insurance exchanges, they could see some benefits, according to David Blumenthal, MD, chief executive officer of The Commonwealth Fund.

Although the decision in King v. Burwell will not directly affect states that have set up their own health insurance exchanges, they could see some benefits, according to David Blumenthal, MD, chief executive officer of The Commonwealth Fund.

He explained that a win for the plaintiffs could create “a very odd reversal” of the typical way subsidies are used in the United States. Wealthy states like New York and California, which have set up their own exchanges, would continue to receive subsidies, while less well-to-do states like Alabama and Mississippi, on the federally facilitated marketplace, will no longer get subsidies.

“However, they continue to pay taxes,” Dr Blumenthal said. “This strikes me as a bad fiscal policy for the United States.”