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HERC Health Economics Seminar

Implications of the Affordable Care Act for Use of VA Primary Care: Lessons from the Massachusetts Health Reform


by Edwin Wong, PhD
Seminar date: 6/18/2014

Description: Recent health care reform mandated by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) explicitly indicates that Veterans may continue to use VA as before ACA. However, major components of ACA including the individual mandate, Medicaid expansion and establishment of health insurance exchanges may either increase or decrease use of VA health services. Understanding how health care reform impacts use of VA primary care and other health services will inform resource planning to ensure VA has appropriate capacity to deliver high quality care. Utilization changes following Massachusetts’ health care reform in 2006 may provide valuable insights because contains many health reform components are similar to ACA. This talk will review ongoing work examining whether health care reform in Massachusetts was associated with changes in Veterans’ use of VA primary care. These analyses are part of ongoing work with the PACT Demonstration Lab Coordinating Center and the VHA Office of Analytics and Business Intelligence. Target audience: Researchers, clinicians, and policymakers interested in monitoring impacts of the ACA.

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