Professor Mark A. Hall releases study that asks ‘Do States Regret Expanding Medicaid Reform?’

Photo of Professor Mark Hall in the Professional Library at the Worrell Professional Center

Professor Mark Hall

Mark A. Hall, Professor of Law and Public Health and Nonresident Senior Fellow in Economic Studies at The Brookings Institution, has released a study entitled, “Do States Regret Expanding Medicaid?” The issue brief  is the product of Wake Forest Law’s Health Law and Policy Program, which Professor Hall directs.

The study addresses whether the 18 states that have chosen not to expand Medicaid coverage should now consider the move since evidence now exists that Medicaid expansion costs to states have proven to be negligible.

The analysis, which was originally published on the Brookings Institution blog, is part of The Leonard D. Schaeffer Initiative for Innovation in Health Policy, which is a partnership between the Center for Health Policy at Brookings and the USC Schaeffer Center for Health Policy & Economics. The Initiative aims to inform the national health care debate with rigorous, evidence-based analysis leading to practical recommendations using the collaborative strengths of USC and Brookings.

“This Issue Brief reviews that evidence, and evaluates continuing claims by Medicaid opponents that expansion is a ‘proven disaster’ for state budgets. The strong balance of objective evidence indicates that actual costs to states so far from expanding Medicaid are negligible or minor, and that states across the political spectrum do not regret their decisions to expand Medicaid.”

“Claims are not well founded that Medicaid expansion will cost states considerably more than what objective analysts project. Instead, those claims are based on sources that are either incomplete, inaccurate, misleading, or out of date in various ways. Although it is unlikely that Medicaid expansion will turn out to be entirely free to states, based on the considerable experience to date, the probable costs appear to be quite low in comparison with the economic and public health benefits of expansion.”

The study’s full findings can be found at news.law.wfu.edu/files/2018/03/Medicaid-regret-Issue-brief.pdf.

Professor Hall is one of the nation’s leading scholars in the areas of health care law, public policy, and bioethics. The author or editor of twenty books, including “Making Medical Spending Decisions” (Oxford University Press), and “Health Care Law and Ethics” (Aspen), he is currently engaged in research in the areas of health care reform, access to care by the uninsured, and insurance regulation. Professor Hall has published scholarship in the law reviews at Berkeley, Chicago, Duke, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Stanford, and his articles have been reprinted in a dozen casebooks and anthologies. He also teaches in the University’s Graduate Programs for Bioethics and its MBA program, and he is on the research faculty at the Medical School. Professor Hall regularly consults with government officials, foundations, and think tanks about health care public policy issues.