MEDICAID EXPANSION STUDY- Texas has one of the highest rates of adults without health insurance living in rural areas. That’s according to a report released yesterday from Georgetown University and University of North Carolina. The study focused on The Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid Expansion decision in states like Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas.
Texas government officials chose not to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. Compared with other states, researchers say Texas has higher rates of non-elderly uninsured adults living in rural areas. 36 percent for rural areas and small towns, and 29 percent in metro areas. Jack Hoadley – is a research professor at Georgetown University – he says those are high uninsured rates across the board.
"And expansion can bring both of those down," Hoadley explains. "But it’s even higher in those rural areas where people have fewer opportunities to get insurance through their jobs maybe unemployment rates are higher and other things that make it harder to keep health insurance."
Hoadly says Medicaid expansion could have helped some rural hospitals and other medical providers in Texas keep their doors open – and in turn keep people in those communities healthier.