BTC BRIEF: The Medicaid Expansion - A Transformative and Fiscally Sustainable Policy for North Carolina
By Brenna Erford Burch
Policy Analyst, Budget & Tax Center
- The Medicaid expansion is projected to extend health insurance coverage to 488,867 North Carolinians in 2014.
- The first year of the expansion alone is expected to reduce the number of uninsured persons in North Carolina by 64 percent, from 1.3 million in 2013 to 475,185 in 2014. Over 95 percent of new enrollees in Medicaid under the expansion are expected to be previously uninsured.
- Determining the cost of Medicaid expansion to North Carolina involves considering not only the direct costs of providing coverage but also the savings that come from having fewer uninsured residents and an overall healthier population.
- Cost savings from the reduction in uncompensated medical care is estimated to reach between $1 and $2 billion between the period 2014-2019, with the most conservative estimate still outpacing the state’s projected $830 million in costs associated with the Medicaid expansion.