Using Behavioral Economics to Inform the Integration of Human Services and Health Programs under the Affordable Care Act

Research Report

Using Behavioral Economics to Inform the Integration of Human Services and Health Programs under the Affordable Care Act

September 15, 2014

Abstract

Behavioral economics, which analyzes how behavior sometimes departs from the rational calculation of self-interest, can help Medicaid programs use targeted enrollment strategies more effectively by eliminating apparently modest procedural requirements, which can greatly reduce participation levels. It can also help health coverage applicants receive SNAP, even though demonstrating eligibility for health subsidies and choosing a health plan can tax many consumers' cognitive resources, making it hard to process information about SNAP. For example, health applicants could be given the option to have the state's food agency contact them later to complete a SNAP application by phone.

Centers

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