Objective: The objective of this study was to determine whether the Affordable Care Act's (ACA) major coverage expansions mitigated the impact of unemployment on health insurance coverage status. Data Source: A 2011-2019 versions of the American Community Survey developed by the University of Minnesota Integrated Public Use Microdata Series program. Research Design: We use difference-in-difference-in-differences (ie, triple difference) regressions to compare changes in the short-run impacts of local unemployment rates before and after the ACA. Principal Findings: Before the ACA, rises in local unemployment were associated with uninsurance due to losses in private coverage (ie, both nongroup and employer sponsored). Following the ACA's full implementation, the link between employment and coverage was attenuated by access to publicly subsidized qualified health plans on the ACA's nongroup market, and enhanced access to Medicaid in states that expanded. Our findings suggest protections from unemployment-linked uninsured spells are largest in states that expanded Medicaid. Conclusions: Expanded access to coverage under the ACA could mitigate the adverse effects on insurance status and access to care historically linked to job loss. However, should the ACA be repealed, many households stand to lose their ability to turn to Medicaid or subsidized nongroup coverage as safety-net resources to offset the burdens of job loss.
|Number of pages||10|
|State||Published - Sep 2021|
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
J.B. received support provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Policies for Action Program (grant #77341) as well as the DREAM Scholar Program in University of Kentucky’s Center for Clinical and Translational Sciences. The remaining authors declare no conflict of interest.
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- Affordable Care Act
- Medicaid expansion
- safety net
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health