This report from MMPI and the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center looks at Medicaid spending in relation not only to total public spending, but also to state revenues and overall economic growth. It concludes that, between Fiscal Years 1994 and 2005, Medicaid spending changed very little in relation to the economy as a whole, and therefore was sustainable given the economic growth over that same period. Looking at Medicaid spending with this broader view provides a new context for policy makers as they think about the Medicaid budget, now and in the future.
In 2003, the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation launched a multi-year policy initiative to study the options for expanding coverage to the uninsured in Massachusetts. The “Roadmap to Coverage” initiative aimed to develop concrete solutions for covering the uninsured and to constructively engage stakeholders in the policy debate. With the release of each Roadmap report, the Foundation convened health care, business, labor, and government leaders to examine and discuss the ideas presented.
In 2005, Massachusetts renegotiated with the federal government major provisions of the State’s Medicaid program governed by the MassHealth Waiver, which has been in effect since 1997. The new terms of the Waiver, which became effective July 1, 2005, are significantly different from the current terms, particularly in the details of how the program is financed. This issue brief describes the most significant changes in the Waiver agreement and identifies the major issues involved with state implementation.
This report provides new perspectives about the importance of MassHealth for the state's business community and, in particular, explains how a strong MassHealth program benefits employers. MassHealth is a major source of health insurance for low-wage workers, covering more than 400,000 employed people and their families. It is a major reason why Massachusetts has a relatively low percentage of people without insurance, and program expansions have helped reduce the costs of uncompensated care, which is financed in part by the business community.