The Network was contacted by a requestor who asked how the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and specifically the individual mandate, affects people who are released from prison.
The Network researched the question and found that about 700,000 prisoners are released annually in the U.S. — and approximately half of them will gain health coverage under federal laws, according to an article published in Health Affairs, a health policy journal. The article discusses how the Medicaid Expansion will probably have the largest impact on insurance coverage for adults recently released from prison. However, Medicaid Expansion will not happen in all states.
The U.S. Supreme Court in National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius allowed states to determine whether or not to expand Medicaid, and currently only 26 states and Washington D.C. are expanding. This will significantly limit the number of adults who would have been covered under the expansion.
The Network directed the requestor to these additional resources:
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