The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) was signed into law on March 11, 2021 as a signature effort to assist in the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and the related economic downturn. Included as part of the sweeping legislation is a program to fully subsidize COBRA coverage for six months starting in April of 2021. This expert perspective provides a short overview of COBRA and mini-COBRA, the major elements of the ARPA COBRA Assistance program, and considerations for state policymakers related to the program.
States Expanding Medicaid See Significant Budget Savings and Revenue Gains
Deborah Bachrach, Patricia Boozang, and Dori Glanz, Manatt Health Solutions
As some states continue to debate whether to implement Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act, early results from those that have done so show the impact this decision has had on their state budgets. States that expanded the number of people eligible for Medicaid are seeing big budgetary savings without reducing services. This report, prepared by Manatt Health Solutions, analyzes data from eight states, showing $1.8 billion in budget savings by the end of 2015 as a result of Medicaid expansion. The findings suggest that states expanding Medicaid should expect to see reduced state spending on programs for the uninsured and programs for high-cost patients, savings related to increased federal dollars for newly eligible Medicaid enrollees, and revenue gains related to existing insurer or provider taxes. In some states, budget savings could offset the cost of Medicaid expansion through 2021.