A Glimpse of the Future?

In 2008 Oregon widened Medicaid access via a lottery among low-income adults. This lottery provided a randomized sample allowing researchers to compare emergency department (ED) use between groups. Overall, ED visits increased by 41% in those covered by Medicaid and only 2% by those without coverage. This coverage increased all types of non-emergency visits. These findings suggest EDs may see large increases in utilization with the advent of the Affordable Care Act.

PositiveTip: Help your already overburdened ED by using it only for genuine medical emergencies!