Reforming Access: Trends in Medicaid Enrollment for New Medicare Beneficiaries, 2008–2011

Source: Laura M. Keohane, Momotazur Rahman and Vincent Mor, Health Services Research, Early View, August 6, 2015
(subscription required)

From the abstract:
Objective: To evaluate whether aligning the Part D low-income subsidy and Medicaid program enrollment pathways in 2010 increased Medicaid participation among new Medicare beneficiaries.

Data Sources: Medicare enrollment records for years 2007–2011.

Study Design: We used a multinomial logistic model with state fixed effects to examine the annual change in limited and full Medicaid enrollment among new Medicare beneficiaries for 2 years before and after the reforms (2008–2011).

Data Extraction Methods: We identified new Medicare beneficiaries in the years 2008–2011 and their participation in Medicaid based on Medicare enrollment records.

Principal Findings: The percentage of beneficiaries enrolling in limited Medicaid at the start of Medicare coverage increased in 2010 by 0.3 percentage points for individuals aging into Medicare and by 1.3 percentage points for those qualifying due to disability (p < .001). There was no significant difference in the size of enrollment increases between states with and without concurrent limited Medicaid eligibility expansions. Conclusions: Our findings suggest that streamlining financial assistance programs may improve Medicare beneficiaries’ access to benefits.