Report Release -- “Implementing the Affordable Care Act: A Roadmap for People with Disabilities”

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First of three reports on health care reform issued by the National Council on Disability

January 19, 2016

Washington, DC –The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), better known as Obamacare, and the topic of the National Council on Disability (NCD)’s latest report, is arguably one of the most sweeping and significant pieces of domestic legislation enacted in generations.

Implementing the Affordable Care Act: A Roadmap for People with Disabilities is the first in a series of three reports released over the next month by NCD — an independent federal agency — and examines ACA implementation. The second in the series examines the impact of ACA and will be released January 26. The third report focuses on monitoring and enforcement and will be released February 2. All reports will be available on NCD’s website.

In the first report, NCD equips the community of 57 million disabled Americans with an inventory of key policy choices at federal and state levels that could greatly affect people with disabilities, so the community can assess priorities and develop an agenda for ACA implementation.

The Implementing the Affordable Care Act report seeks to:

  • Provide an overview of future healthcare implementation decisions by private insurers and state and federal officials, along with an analytical supplement exploring policy options important to people with disabilities;
  • Maximize ACA’s positive impact on people with disabilities while limiting risks to the disability community that could result from unwise implementation choices; and
  • Evaluate the options facing states as they consider expanding Medicaid, structuring Medicaid benefits for newly eligible adults, defining essential health benefits, implementing state-based exchanges, taking up the Community First Choice State Option, integrating Medicare and Medicaid funding and services for dually eligible adults, and making other critical decisions.

“The first in our series of reports on the Affordable Care Act outlines key policy choices at all levels of ACA implementation that can either greatly help or harm people with disabilities depending on how they are conducted,” said NCD Chair Clyde Terry. “It is NCD’s hope that this report will provide the disability community with the tools they need to prioritize issues that warrant careful attention and help influence policymakers as decisions are made.”

NCD appreciates the assistance of the Urban Institute’s Health Policy Center, who worked collaboratively with NCD in preparing this series of reports. “Implementing the Affordable Care Act” is available on NCD’s website at: http://www.ncd.gov/publications/2016/implementing-affordable-care-act-aca-roadmap-people-disabilities

About the National Council on Disability (NCD): First established as an advisory body within the Department of Education in 1978, NCD became an independent federal agency in 1984. In 1986, NCD recommended enactment of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and drafted the first version of the bill which was introduced in the House and Senate in 1988. Since enactment of the ADA in 1990, NCD has continued to play a leading role in crafting disability policy, and advising the President, Congress and other federal agencies on disability policies, programs, and practices.

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