The Montana Healthcare Foundation partnered with nationally-recognized experts at Manatt Health to analyze the implications for Montana if the Medicaid expansion is repealed. The new report, Repealing the Medicaid Expansion: Implications for Montana, projects that over 71,000 newly insured Montanans could lose access to medical care, and that the state could lose over $284 million in critical health care funding if Congress repeals the Medicaid expansion.
In 2015, Montana expanded Medicaid to cover adults with incomes of up to 138 percent of the federal poverty line through the bipartisan Health and Economic Livelihood Partnership (HELP) Act. This report analyzes the impacts of Montana’s recent Medicaid expansion, and the potential consequences if Congress repeals the program.
Other key findings in the report include:
- Over 30,000 newly insured adults accessed preventive services (such as cancer and diabetes screening and dental visits) in the first year, which has the potential to prevent many more serious and costly illnesses in the future.
- Montana’s hospitals experienced a 25 percent decline in bad debt and charity care. This is particularly important for many rural critical access hospitals that were struggling to keep their doors open to serve rural and frontier communities throughout the state.
- Prior to the Medicaid expansion, most Indian Health Service facilities in Montana were only able to refer patients for specialty care “when life or limb was at risk.” The Medicaid expansion has allowed access to cancer screenings and critically needed procedures for American Indians.
Read the full report and our press release.
Last modified: November 11, 2019