HealthExecSnapshot
Thursday January 11, 2018


Medicaid Expansion's Impact on Hospital Closures

Richard C. Lindrooth, PhD, professor in the Department of Health Systems, Management and Policy in the Colorado School of Public Health

Richard C. Lindrooth, PhD, professor in the Department of Health Systems, Management and Policy in the Colorado School of Public Health

A recent study published in Health Affairs found that hospital closures rose by 0.429 per 100 in the states that did not expand Medicaid, while closure rates fell by 0.33 per 100 hospitals in states that did. Lead author Richard C. Lindrooth, PhD, and collegues also observed the difference between rural and urban hospital closures and the pronounced effect of expansion in areas with high preexpansion uninsurance rates. "Hospitals are often major employers of local residents," they noted. "The closure of a hospital results in the loss of well-paid, highly skilled jobs. Absent alternative employers, hospital closures will hasten the migration of well-paid skilled labor to larger cities."

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