Nearly 440,000 Massachusetts residents have enrolled in private or subsidized health insurance programs since that state began its healthcare reform effort in June 2006, according to a report released by the states Health Care Finance and Policy Division.
The gain represents a nearly 9% increase in the states number of insured residentsmore than 191,000 of whom have acquired private group coverage through either an employer or self-pay program, according to the numbers. These newest enrollment numbers show that the multipronged effort to insure people through the expansion of Medicaid, publicly subsidized insurance and the individual mandate is working, said state HHS Secretary JudyAnn Bigby in a written statement.
The state also experienced declines in money spent on safety net care as a result of growing rates of insured residents, according to the report. Uncompensated-care payments to hospitals declined by $66 million, or 42%, between the first quarter of 2007 and the first quarter of 2008. -- by Shawn Rhea