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A memo to a California state Medicaid administrator - Term Paper Example

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To: Decision Maker From: Your Name Subject: Reducing the Number of Uninsured in California Date: Background of the Problem In the history of every deep-rooted and difficult problem, there comes a time when the consequences of the predicament seems to be overwhelming enough that a solution turns out to be not simply appealing, but vital…
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A memo to a California state Medicaid administrator
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A memo to a California state Medicaid administrator

California, for past two decades, has witnessed an escalation in the number of uninsured individuals, as the percentage with employer health insurance coverage has thinned. The section of the non-elderly population insured through an employer kept on dropping from 65 percent to 52 percent between 1987 and 2009.i Albeit growth in Medicaid coverage somewhat counteract the drop, there remains at least 20 percent uninsured Californians.ii California has a greater percentage of uninsured and a lower proportion of people with employer-sponsored insurance than all the other states in the country.iii *table taken from California Health Care Almanac (2010a): http://www.chcf.org/~/media/MEDIA%20LIBRARY%20Files/PDF/C/PDF%20CaliforniaUninsured2010.pdf Between 2007 and 2009, the population of uninsured children and adults in California grew by 28%. The growth in the number of uninsured transpired in every age group, yet employed adults were the most affected.iv The number of people out of work in California grew from 5.4% to 12.3% between 2007 and 2009. Non-White individuals are also more prone to be uninsured. Young people are also more prone to be uninsured, or roughly 63 percent are at most 34 years old.v Being insured, besides enhancing access to healthcare, can increase annual income by 10-30 percent, cut down mortality rate by 5-15 percent, and improve the educational achievement of children.vi Employer health insurance coverage is the primary source of insurance for Californians and in the United States. According to California Health Care Almanac (CHCF) in 2010, benefit plan and premiums have evolved over time.vii Important findings are: Since 2002, premiums have increased 134.4%, more than five times the 24.5% rise in California’s overall inflation rate.viii Twenty-eight percent of California firms either reduced benefits or increased cost sharing for employees in 2010 as a result of the economic downturn, up considerably from the 15% who did so in 2009.ix *graph taken from California Health Care Almanac (2010b): http://www.chcf.org/publications/2010/12/california-employer-health-benefits-survey Medicaid in California, or Medi-Cal, covers the health insurance of 7.7 million individuals. California witnessed major achievements in trimming down the number of children with no insurance by 12 percent from 2003 to 2007.x The Affordable Care Act broadens Medicaid to cover ‘133 percent of federal poverty level’.xi This significant expansion will aid vast numbers of poor Americans who cannot afford to get insured. Annually, Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) have served a major function in reducing the impact of the economic downturn for employed families. The federal government will totally subsidize the expansion of Medicaid for all new enrollees from 2014 to 2016. Medicaid is still collaboration between the states and the federal government, which maintain considerable flexibility in the way they plan the different parts of their Medicaid initiatives.xii The Affordable Care Act offers new alternatives to states to enhance care and regulate expenditure increase through medical home demonstration initiatives, payment adjustments, and a focus on offering long-term assistances and services in community- and home-based locations rather than in hospitals or other institutions, when necessary. Discussion and Analysis of ... Read More
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