AHRQ Study Shows Families Could Save More Than $1,000 on Average if States Expanded Medicaid

Issue 456
AHRQ's Electronic Newsletter summarizes Agency research and programmatic activities.
January 28, 2015

AHRQ Stats

The percent of hospitalizations with multiple chronic conditions increased most rapidly (53 percent) among 18- to 44-year-olds, from 29.6 percent in 2003 to a projected 45.4 percent in 2014. (Source: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project Statistical Brief #183: Trends and Projections in Hospital Stays for Adults With Multiple Chronic Conditions, 2003-2014.)

Today's Headlines

  1. AHRQ Study Shows Families Could Save More Than $1,000 on Average if States Expanded Medicaid.
  2. AHRQ Report Finds More Children Hospitalized for Suicide, Self-Injury.
  3. New AHRQ Toolkit Helps Keep Dialysis Patients Safer.
  4. On-Demand Continuing Education Webinars Available for Nurses, Nurse Practitioners and Nurse Educators.
  5. Register Now: February 4 Webinar on Using Payment, One of 9 National Quality Strategy Aims, To Improve Health Care Quality.
  6. AHRQ in the Professional Literature.

1. AHRQ Study Shows Families Could Save More Than $1,000 on Average if States Expanded Medicaid

A new AHRQ study published in Health Affairs estimated that low income, uninsured adults could have saved, on average, more than $1,000 per year in family out-of-pocket health care costs if they were able to enroll in Medicaid, according to the analysis by AHRQ researcher Steven Hill, Ph.D. The study measured family out-of-pocket health care spending in 2005-2010 among uninsured, low-income adults who gained eligibility for Health Insurance Marketplace coverage because they lived in states that had not yet expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. It then compared those data with the following simulated scenarios for these adults: coverage in a Marketplace silver plan with financial assistance and enrolling in expanded Medicaid. Findings revealed under a Marketplace silver plan, average out-of-pocket health care spending would have been $1,948 per year, while under Medicaid, out-of-pocket health care spending would have been $938 a year. Thus, enrolling in Medicaid would have saved these adults' families approximately $1,000 per year, on average, compared with a Marketplace silver plan. The study "Medicaid Expansion in Opt-Out States Would Produce Consumer Savings and Less Financial Burden Than Exchange Coverage" was featured January 28 in Health Affairs.

2. AHRQ Report Finds More Children Hospitalized for Suicide, Self-Injury

Hospitalizations for suicide and self-injury increased significantly for all children between 2006 and 2011, especially among children ages 10 to 14, according to a new article in the journal Academic Pediatrics. The analysis of hospitalizations from 2006 to 2011 is based on a report prepared from data sources sponsored by AHRQ and led by AHRQ researchers. The report found that nearly 59,000 children ages 1 to 17 were admitted to the hospital for a suicide or self-injury diagnosis in 2011, rising 104 percent in the five-year study period. The increase was the most pronounced in children ages 10 to 14, rising 151 percent, and among children ages 5 to 9, rising 130 percent. The article and abstract, "Annual Report on Health Care for Children and Youth in the United States: National Estimates of Cost, Utilization and Expenditures for Children with Mental Disorders," appears in the January-February issue of Academic Pediatrics.

3. New AHRQ Toolkit Helps Keep Dialysis Patients Safer

To help prevent infection in people with end-stage renal disease, AHRQ has developed a new resource, the AHRQ Safety Program for End-Stage Renal Disease Facilities Toolkit. Dialysis clinics can use this toolkit to prevent healthcare-associated infections in their patients. The toolkit helps clinicians and other health care workers follow clinical best practices, create a culture of safety, use checklists and other audit tools and engage patients and their families in infection prevention practices. This new resource has science-based, practical information—including educational videos—that reflects the experiences of the frontline providers who helped develop the toolkit.

4. On-Demand Continuing Education Webinars Available for Nurses, Nurse Practitioners and Nurse Educators

AHRQ offers Web-based continuing education for nurses, nurse practitioners, case managers, staff educators and nurse practitioner faculty. Eligible professionals can view recorded webinars that highlight resources such as the National Guidelines Clearinghouse, the Electronic Preventive Services Selector and the Improving Patient Safety in Long-Term Care Facilities training modules. The webinars offer practical insights on how these resources can be integrated into education and practice. Registration is open.

5. Register Now: February 4 Webinar on Using Payment, One of 9 National Quality Strategy Aims, To Improve Health Care Quality

AHRQ will host a webinar from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. ET on February 4 about how organizations are using payment, one of the nine National Quality Strategy (NQS) levers, to improve health care quality. In showing how payment can be used to achieve the NQS aim to provide better, more affordable health care, the webinar will highlight the work of Buying Value, an initiative of private health care purchasers, in refocusing payment on person-centered care and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts' Alternative Quality Contract, which uses an innovative way to pay for care that focuses on promoting quality and rewards positive health outcomes.

Speakers include:

  • Nancy J. Wilson, B.S.N., M.D., M.P.H., Executive Lead for the National Quality Strategy.
  • Gerry Shea, Director, Buying Value.
  • Dana Gelb Safran, Sc.D., Senior Vice President of Performance Measurement and Improvement at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts.

Registration is open.

6. AHRQ in the Professional Literature

Albrecht JS, Gruber-Baldini AL, Hirshon JM, et al. Depressive symptoms and hospital readmission in older adults. J Am Geriatr Soc 2014 Mar;62(3):495-9. Epub 2014 Feb 10. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Wright A, Ash JS, Erickson JL, et al. A qualitative study of the activities performed by people involved in clinical decision support: recommended practices for success. J Am Med Inform Assoc 2014 May-Jun;21(3):464-72. Epub 2013 Sep 2. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Berner ES, Ray MN, Panjamapirom A, et al. Exploration of an automated approach for receiving patient feedback after outpatient acute care visits. J Gen Intern Med 2014 Aug;29(8):1105-12. Epub 2014 Mar 8. Epub ahead of print. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®

McGuire TG, Newhouse JP, Normand SL, et al. Assessing incentives for service-level selection in private health insurance exchanges. J Health Econ 2014 May;35:47-63. Epub 2014 Feb 17. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Mell MW, Wang NE, Morrison DE, et al. Interfacility transfer and mortality for patients with ruptured abdominal aortic aneurysm. J Vasc Surg 2014 Sep;60(3)553-7. Epub 2014 Apr 24. Epub ahead of print. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

DeVoe JE, Tillotson CJ, Angier H, et al. Recent health insurance trends for US families: children gain while parents lose. Matern Child Health J 2014 May;18(4):1007-16. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Lieberman DA, Polinski JM, Choudhry NK, et al. Unintended consequences of a Medicaid prescription copayment policy. Med Care 2014 May;52(5):422-7. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

Kilgore ML, Outman R, Locher JL, et al. Multimodal intervention to improve osteoporosis care in home health settings: results from a cluster randomized trial. Osteoporos Int 2013 Oct;24(10):2555-60. Epub 2013 Mar 28. Select to access the abstract on PubMed®.

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Page last reviewed January 2015
Page originally created January 2015
Internet Citation: AHRQ Study Shows Families Could Save More Than $1,000 on Average if States Expanded Medicaid. Content last reviewed January 2015. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/news/newsletters/e-newsletter/456.html