In early 2008, Oregon opened a waiting list lottery for a limited number of spots in its Medicaid program. From the 90,000 people who signed up, the state drew approximately 30,000 names of people who were allowed to apply to its Medicaid program. The results of this lottery have been studied over subsequent years, allowing researchers the ability to analyze the effect of expanding access to public health insurance on health care use and patient outcomes.
Host Dr. Maurice Pickard talks with Katherine Baicker, Dean and the Emmett Dedmon Professor at the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago. She is one of the leaders of the Oregon Health Insurance Experiment, which investigated the effects of the Oregon Medicaid lottery. They discuss some of the conclusions from this study, including how a person’s increased exposure to health care through insurance coverage appears to produce significant, multifaceted, and nuanced benefits to one's health.