May 19, 2017

Episode 316: The Shape of Health Care in Arizona

A new health plan working through Congress, we ask what's next for coverage in the Grand Canyon State?

Republicans of Congress have moved to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act a new health plan - the American Health Care Act.

The bill has moved from the House to the Senate, and the Congressional Budget Office is expected to details about the costs of the plan in coming days.

On Arizona Week, we take a look the changes in those covered in the Grand Canyon State. Daniel Derksen, of the university of Arizona Center for Rural Health, provided numbers for our comparison.

In 2012, before the Affordable Care Act, 3.3 million people – or about half the population – had insurance sponsored by employers. More than 1 million adults and children received services through Medicaid, and about 12 percent had Medicare benefits. The uninsured made up about 18 percent.

In 2016, after the Affordable Care Act took effect, nearly 3 million people (41 percent) in Arizona had employer-sponsored health care; 2 million adults and children were covered by Medicaid; about 950,000 had Medicare; and the uninsured had fallen to about 770,000, or 11 percent of the total population.

Derksen said if the American Health Care Act takes effect, 380,000 Arizonans will lose health coverage.

We discuss the impact of these changes on Arizona with Derksen, who said it will be “devastating” to Arizona, and speak to other health experts about the future of coverage in the state.

On the program

  • Gov. Doug Ducey said he’s keeping tabs on the state of health care in the state
  • Arizona State University professor Denis Cortese recently co-authored the book “Resucing Healthcare: A Leadership Prescription to Make Health Care What We All Want It To Be.”
  • U.S. Rep. Raúl Grijalva on the Republican plan to repeal and replace Obamacare
  • The Bipartisan Policy Center’s Andy Slavitt, former acting administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in the Obama administration.
  • The University of Arizona’s Eller College of Management’s Keith Joiner
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