Obamacare name game in Arkansas: SB96

Hello my name is ObamacareThe many names have been used for Obamacare Medicaid Expansion in Arkansas add to the confusion. SB96 is just another name.

Obamacare is the common name for the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

Medicaid expansion is one of the cornerstones of Obamacare. Unlike traditional Medicaid eligibility is based merely on age and income. Census data indicates that the Medicaid expansion population is primarily able bodied working age adults with no children and almost 50% do not work. Obamacare attempted to force states to provide Medicaid expansion but the U.S. Supreme Court said state were free to opt in or not.

In 2012 Governor Mike Beebe tried to get state legislators to support Obamacare Medicaid Expansion.  He didn’t get enough support until a name change way used to describe a federal waiver on how Medicaid Expansion was to be delivered in Arkansas.

Arkansas Health Care Independence Act is the name of the 2013 Arkansas law that adopted Obamacare Medicaid Expansion. But Obamacare supporters claimed it was a “conservative alternative”.

Private Option is an unofficial name for the program under the Arkansas Health Care Independence Act.  As just mentioned it was touted as a “conservative alternative” to Obamacare Medicaid Expansion.  However, it is Obamacare Medicaid Expansion merely with a different system for delivery of services.

SB96 or “Arkansas Health Reform Act of 2015” if passed will continues the Private Option for almost two years, which is the exact date the federal waiver for the Private Option runs out anyway.  It also sets up a task force to work on new legislation to continue to work new legislation to continue coverage to people eligible under Medicaid Expansion (Private Option).

Arkansas Health Care Independence Act or Private Option or SB96 or Arkansas Health Care Reform Act of 2015 = Obamacare Medicaid Expansion.

1 Comment on Obamacare name game in Arkansas: SB96

  1. It is disappointing, at best, that conservative Republicans pushing Medicaid Expansion are so very willing to get us so lost in semantics…and we uncovered the facts when the Private Option (“not an entitlement, can stop any time”) was first implemented. Kudos to those who are still discussing Facts…ALL OF THEM. Thank you for your efforts!

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