Rachel Gershon in STAT: States may drive future of national health care reform

UMass Medical School Communications

March 29, 2017
  Rachel Gershon, JD, MPH

Rachel Gershon, JD, MPH

Health care reform may now lay with states, which can use federal waivers to change the Affordable Care Act and Medicaid with less fanfare than efforts that originate in Washington, D.C., according to UMass Medical School health care law and policy expert Rachel Gershon, JD, MPH, in an opinion piece for STAT.

Now that the American Health Care Act has been pulled by the Trump administration, many are wondering what comes next. Gershon, an associate in the Center for Health Law and Economics, delves into the lesser-known world of health care waivers to discuss possible next steps.

Gershon explains the complexities of the two waivers available to states—Section 1332 of the ACA and Section 1115 of the Social Security Act—and how changes under these provisions rarely face major public debate, despite their ability to usher in big changes to Medicaid and health insurance markets. She also cautions that state-based changes should not be ignored because they can have national implications, much like the 1115 waiver in Massachusetts that led to the ACA.

An expert in Medicaid, health reform and social services, Gershon has written and presented extensively about waivers, and provides insight to states on how they might use waivers to achieve health reform goals.