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By now it’s become abundantly clear how important it is for individuals to have health coverage. COVID-19 or not, healthcare is saving lives and the ACA has played a big part in making sure of it, namely the expansion of Medicaid.
A recent Kaiser Family Foundation study found that of the 79% of Americans that lost their job due to COVID-19 related factors, 12.7 million could likely qualify for Medicaid, giving those Americans a feasible option for obtaining quality coverage they can afford.
In addition, a recent study conducted by the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) found states that expanded Medicaid as a result of the ACA saw nearly a 30% drop in cancer related deaths. Lead author and radiation oncology fellow at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center Anna Lee stated, “We now have evidence that Medicaid expansion has saved the lives of many people with cancer across the United States,” according to an article by The Hill.
Another study published by the National Bureau of Economic Research cites that 15,600 deaths could have been averted if all 50 states implemented an expansion of Medicaid, according to a post by Vox.
To date, 37 states and the District of Columbia have expanded Medicaid. For the 14 remaining states that have not adopted the ACA’s Medicaid expansion, roughly 4.4 million uninsured nonelderly adults could become eligible for Medicaid if these states elected to expand their programs, according to a study by the Kaiser Family Foundation.
The expansion of Medicaid first started in 2014 and allowed states the ability to provide residents with coverage based on their income level, rather than a disability. As a result, thousands more Americans have been able to qualify for the government subsidized program.
The continuing expansion of Medicaid is further evidence that the ACA is becoming entrenched in our healthcare ecosystem. From preventing cancer deaths to providing health coverage to those that otherwise wouldn’t have been able to obtain it, the expansion of Medicaid, and the ACA as a whole, have played a key role amid COVID-19.
Employers, that means the healthcare law is likely here to stay for good, and that means complying with the healthcare law’s Employer Shared Responsibility Provision (ESRP), also known as the Employer Mandate.
As a reminder to employers in conjunction with the Employer Shared Responsibility Payment (ESRP), the ACA’s Employer Mandate, Applicable Large Employers (ALEs) organizations with 50 or more full-time employees and full-time equivalent employees) are required to offer Minimum Essential Coverage (MEC) to at least 95% of their full-time workforce (and their dependents) whereby such coverage meets Minimum Value (MV) and is Affordable for the employee or be subject to Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Section 4980H penalties.
The IRS is currently issuing Letter 226J penalty notices to employers identified as having failed to comply with the ACA’s Employer Mandate for the 2017 tax year. By the year 2026, the IRS is projected to issue over $228 billion in ACA penalty assessments to employers identified as having failed to comply with the ACA’s Employer Mandate.
Employers, consider an all-inclusive ACA compliance solution so worrying about IRS penalty assessments is something you, your broker, and HR staff won’t have to worry about. Contact us to learn about ACA Complete today.
We’re committed to helping companies reduce risk, avoid penalties, and achieve 100% ACA compliance. For questions about the ACA contact us here.