UW-Madison: DeLeire to use grant to study health care coverage, childless adults

Contact: Thomas DeLeire, 608-262-4531, tdeleire@lafollette.wisc.edu

MADISON – The La Follette School is one of nine institutions nationwide to be awarded a grant to provide insights into health reform, including issues related to state-level implementation of the federal Affordable Care Act.

Thomas DeLeire, professor of public affairs and director of the La Follette School will lead the project, Planning for ACA Coverage Expansion: How Insurance Coverage for Childless Adults Will Affect Utilization. It is funded by a $199,708 grant from the State Health Access Reform Evaluation, a national program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

“The University of Wisconsin-Madison and the state of Wisconsin have long been collaborators in evaluating novel and innovative social and health policy programs,” DeLeire says. “We are proud to continue this tradition and are honored that the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation has recognized us as leaders in state-policy evaluation. Understanding the impact of covering childless adults in public health insurance programs is of great interest and importance both to our state and to other states as they consider expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act.”

State Health Access Reform Evaluation provides information on the impact of coverage expansion efforts and guidance about how to implement health reforms. The key goals are to develop a coordinated approach to the study of health reform issues from a state perspective, and to produce and disseminate informative, user-friendly findings for state and federal policy-makers and agencies. To facilitate these goals, SHARE partners policy-makers with researchers to ensure that state needs inform research from the outset.

“States have about 18 months remaining to prepare for a considerable expansion in the number of residents eligible for Medicaid and for the launch of state health insurance exchanges under the ACA,” says SHARE director Lynn Blewett. “Even in those states making the most rapid progress, there is still considerable work to be done. The funding of these grants will allow us to provide states with something much-needed – practical, easily applicable learnings on what works as they prepare to roll out expanded Medicaid coverage, insurance exchanges and other health reforms.”