There will likely be chatter among lawmakers as to what Arizona Medicaid expansion will cost, but it’s less clear whether there will be candid assessments of what we stand to gain. In case you missed it the first time, a September analysis by the Grand Canyon Institute (GCI) has some answers: $2.776 billion (nearly a full percentage point) worth of economic growth, 21,000 new jobs, $105 million in new state tax revenue and the stabilizing of not just critical health infrastructure but a leading Arizona industry – which will come at no cost to taxpayers if the Governor’s planned bed tax becomes a reality.
Not bad for a program that provides coverage and access to 300,000 more people and relieves the pressure on 3.2 million already-covered Arizonans to pay rapidly increasing premiums. Experts generally estimate that an average of $1,700 is built into Arizonans’ annual premiums due to the cost of uncompensated care for those who aren’t covered.
Painting this picture by the numbers yields a healthier, economically stronger and brighter future.