Deep South Supports Medicaid Expansion, Not PPACA

Despite widespread opposition to President Barack Obama's signature health reform law, nearly two-thirds of adults in the Deep South support Medicaid expansion in their state in accordance with the law's optional provision, according to survey results from the left-leaning Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies and funded in part by a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

Sixty-two percent of 2,500 adult respondents across Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi and South Carolina — 500 surveyed in each state between March and April — favored expanding the program on a general question, including majorities among non-Hispanic whites in each of the five states. About 49 percent of self-identified conservatives opposed Medicaid expansion, but the report notes as many as 47 percent of them supported it. Those who identified as Republican were the most opposed subgroup, with only 37.9 percent behind an expansion.

When asked a more detailed question explaining who Medicaid expansion would cover and how it would be funded, respondents' approval dropped to 53.8 percent, retaining majorities in each state but losing the overall white majority. Just more than 44.2 percent of whites favored the expansion, while 42.6 percent of whites recommended Medicaid in their state remain unchanged.

Just one in three respondents supported the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act as a whole, but the only specific feature that was widely unpopular among respondents was the federal tax penalty for not obtaining health insurance. Subsidies for lower-income individuals to obtain health insurance was favored by 68.8 percent of respondents, and the online health insurance exchanges won 75 percent of respondents' approval, according to the survey's authors.

"The survey results show unmistakable racial and class differences that clearly influenced the respondents' views," the report said. "Respondents who were well-educated, earned good incomes and had health insurance — and whose acquaintances also had health insurance — were cooler to the [PPACA] and its provisions than were those less well-off and those having friends, family, and neighbors who were uninsured."

More Articles on Medicaid Expansion:

Beaten in Legislatures, Medicaid Expansion Backers Plan Ballot Item 
Oklahoma Governor Hopes to Keep Medicaid Afloat With Only State Funds
CMS Loosens Medicaid Enrollment Process

Copyright © 2022 Becker's Healthcare. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy. Cookie Policy. Linking and Reprinting Policy.


Featured Whitepapers

Featured Webinars