Obamacare is the name of the Affordable Care Act that was passed by Congress in 2010. Medicaid, on the other hand, is the health insurance program run by the government.
Medicaid helps provide free or low-cost coverage to millions of Americans. This includes people who qualify under state income eligibility requirements and children and adults with disabilities.
Obamacare is the name of a law that governs what private insurance plans cover and how much they cost. Medicaid is a government-funded health program that covers low-income individuals, children, pregnant women, elderly adults and people with disabilities.
While both the ACA and Medicaid are federal programs, they operate differently depending on the state that you live in. For example, you’ll find that most states run their own Medicaid programs, with varying eligibility requirements and coverage levels.
The ACA, on the other hand, requires all health insurers to offer a suite of essential benefits that is designed to help lower the out-of-pocket costs of consumers. These include annual checkups, maternity and newborn care, prescription drugs, mental health services, emergency services and more.
As a result, the ACA has made it easier for millions of Americans to get affordable health coverage with minimal out-of-pocket costs. Those with incomes below 400% of the poverty level qualify for financial assistance to reduce their premiums and out-of-pocket healthcare costs.
This has resulted in a dramatic drop in the number of uninsured Americans, and enrollment in marketplace plans reached an all-time high in 2022. It’s estimated that by the end of 2020, almost 4 out of 5 uninsured Americans will be covered through ACA-compliant plans or Medicaid/CHIP.
During the 2023 coverage year, ACA plans will reach record affordability thanks to new financial assistance. These subsidies have been enhanced through the American Rescue Plan and the Inflation Reduction Act, and will be extended through 2025.
However, while the ACA has been successful in improving access to healthcare for millions of American citizens, it’s important to understand that there are some differences between it and Medicaid. For one, while the ACA requires all private health insurance to offer a suite of essential health benefits (EHB), Medicaid covers everything that it does not, from prenatal and maternity care to long-term care.
Are obamacare and medicaid the same thing?
The Affordable Care Act (ACA), often called “Obamacare” or just “Obamacare,” was signed into law by President Barack Obama in 2010. It is a law that expands the availability of affordable health insurance coverage to more Americans.
It also curbs healthcare costs by regulating insurers and drug companies, taxing the insurance industry, and establishing insurance exchanges where individuals can shop for affordable, quality health coverage. The ACA also expanded Medicaid, which was a cornerstone of the Affordable Care Act, to provide coverage to millions of low-income Americans.
Medicare, on the other hand, is a federal program that provides health insurance to people 65 years and older. Medicare Part C, or Medicare Advantage plans, is an alternative to traditional Medicare that offers additional benefits like dental and vision coverage. Prescription drugs are covered under the Medicare prescription drug plan, known as Part D.
In order to qualify for Medicaid, a person must have been a citizen or legal resident of the United States for five years. There are exceptions to this rule for refugee and asylum seekers, who may qualify for emergency Medicaid coverage immediately upon achieving status.
Many low-income adults and children enroll in Medicaid managed care programs, which have been a major feature of the Affordable Care Act. These programs typically accept a fixed percentage of total service costs as payment in advance. In return, the states pay a monthly capitated rate per member to Medicaid managed care organizations (MCOs), who then cover all of the medical expenses that a Medicaid member incurs.
The ACA also expanded Medicaid eligibility to include low-income children, pregnant women, and people with disabilities. In addition, it paved the way for expanded employer-sponsored health coverage and annual open enrollment periods. These changes grew enrollment in Medicaid/CHIP to more than 1.5 million people in 2022, a record high for the program.