There’s a thing Texas Republican leadership could do. It would save the state money, keep its residents healthier and make Texas a more attractive place to live. It’s never going to happen, however, unless the politics in the state change drastically, enough that elected officials can swallow accepting one of the biggest parts of the Affordable Care Act — Medicaid expansion.
According to a new report from the Kaiser Family Foundation, more than 1 million Texans without health insurance would gain coverage if the state signed up for expanding Medicaid. That’s about 22 percent of the state’s 4.5 million uninsured residents. Data show that the state would reap a significant savings from a decline in uninsured visits to public hospitals and other uncompensated care. According to a report cited by the Kaiser Family Foundation, Medicaid expansion cut 41 cents from every dollar that hospitals in expansion states spent on uncompensated care from 2013-15, leading to a cumulative estimated savings of $6.2 billion.