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Report on MA Health Reform: Racial disparities in coverage eliminated, enjoys broad support

A new report from the Urban Institute is out this week on the effects of health reform in Massachusetts. Our friends up North have a four-year head start on the national reform effort since MA’s former Governor Mitt Romney implemented a very similar plan to the national reform bill in 2006. While starting to grapple with the major changes needed to reduce costs for the long term, the report finds health reform in MA continues to enjoy broad support, has increased the percentage of people covered to 95% and has also had an amazing effect on racial disparities in health coverage:

Most notably, with the strong increase in insurance coverage among racial/ethnic minority adults in the state under health reform, there was no longer a difference in coverage between minority and white, non-Hispanic adults in fall 2009.

MA and the national reform bill represent a uniquely American brand of health care reform – while it may not be perfect, it’s clearly a reform model that can really work.

4 Comments

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  2. WILLIAM MURRAT

    June 15, 2010 at 10:39 am

    People always like to get something for free. Many other studies paint a completely different picture. Without huge federal subsidies for the expanded Medicaid, the State Treasurer says the system would probably break the state’s budget. The system has done nothing to control costs, and most private insurers have left the state.

  3. Adam Searing

    June 15, 2010 at 1:58 pm

    If you’d like to cite a source as unbiased as the Urban Institute, I’d love to see it. And since 95% of people are insured, it’s hard to see how “most private insurers have left the state.”

  4. WILLIAM MURRAT

    June 16, 2010 at 9:04 am

    I would hardly expect the Urban Institute,largely funded by federal dollars, to come up with any other conclusion. Many insurers have left the state, and 4 out of the 5 largest remaining insurers are not even accepting new clients.Spending has gone from $ 630 million in 2007 to $1.75 Billion in 2010 which would be unsustainable if the federal government was not kicking in half the total. Per capita, the healthcare cost is now the highest in the world, insurance premiums are the highest in the country, and small business premiums are the highest in the country. Many hospitals are struggling to carry the huge Medicaid load, and there is a huge disparity between patient demand and available facilities. Why should we emulate this model?