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CBO Estimates Lower Cost, Higher Coverage from ACA


The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released April 14 an update of the budgetary effect of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA’s) health insurance coverage provisions. CBO estimates the net cost of these provisions to the federal government will be $104 billion lower for the next decade than previously projected. CBO attributes the savings to lower than expected marketplace (exchange) insurance premiums, which decreases the amount of premium subsidies from the federal government. The report estimates that 2016 marketplace premiums will be 15 percent less than what CBO forecast in 2009.

CBO also estimates that 25 million more people will have health insurance coverage in 2016 due to the ACA. That figure includes 12 million more people who will have insurance coverage through Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). CBO estimates this will increase the percentage of non-elderly Americans with health insurance coverage from 80 percent before the ACA to 89 percent in 2016. The report also predicts 26 million more people will be insured due to the ACA each year from 2017 to 2024, including an estimated 13 million more people who will be enrolled in Medicaid or CHIP in each of these years.


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