Medicaid Coverage

1. The ACA imposed a tax penalty on those who did not buy health insurance. Is it really necessary to impose such a penalty? Is a tax penalty of $695 per year, or 2.5 percent of one’s income, adequate to encourage people to buy coverage? Who would be least likely to buy? Most likely? How large an effect would the elimination of the penalty have on the number of covered people?

2. As a result of the Supreme Court decision, states may voluntarily expand Medicaid coverage. What incentives do they have to expand? What are the costs of doing so? What interest groups are likely to line up on each side of the issue?

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3. Is a large employer likely to stop offering health insurance to its employees and simply pay the fine for not doing so? Why?