Last week, our nation made history, confirming the first Black woman justice of the Supreme Court: Ketanji Brown Jackson. We hope that having the nation’s highest court better reflect the U.S. population will, over the long haul, improve the odds of achieving one of our own aims—health equity.
Another of our aims is health care affordability. And last week saw a celebration of the 12th anniversary of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Notwithstanding fierce opposition to the law when it was passed and for a decade after, 55% of U.S. adults now see the ACA favorably.
The ACA has undoubtedly improved access to care for Marylanders. At least 521,630 Maryland residents have gained health coverage through the ACA. Maryland's uninsured rate fell from 10.2% in 2013 before the ACA took effect to 5.9% as of 2019.
That’s thanks to Medicaid expansion, plus the availability of affordable individual coverage on the Maryland Health Benefit Exchange, plus provisions in federal law such as prohibition of coverage exclusions for people having pre-existing conditions.
The ACA also is the law that enabled creation of Maryland’s All-Payer Model (2014-18) and today’s Total Cost of Care Model. The Model protects access to care for people of limited means across the state and especially in urban and rural communities, where ever-rising numbers of people rely on public coverage programs.
Our Model also gives private insurance plans, including employer-based health benefits plans, real savings on hospital care.
We in the Maryland hospital field cannot take these gains for granted. We must continue to lead in building toward diversity and equity and to protect and advance health care for all Marylanders.
President & CEO