Trending News Today: ACA Exchange Enrollees Spend Less on Prescription Drugs

Top news of the day from across the healthcare landscape.

New research shows that people who purchased plans through Affordable Care Act exchanges typically spend less on prescriptions, despite filling more prescriptions than they did before the health law, according to Kaiser Health News. Lower-income people who enrolled in Medicaid spend 58% less out-of-pocket for prescription drugs. It is likely that people who qualify for Medicaid under the law would have went without treatment if money was an issue.

A majority of Californians who were uninsured before the Affordable Care Act are currently insured, but rising costs are a concern for many. A survey found only a small increase in the state’s insured rate in the past year, likely because those who wanted to sign up already have, the LA Times reported. However, those who became insured still go without care, and worry about paying medical bills if they develop an illness.

The federal government announced that it will give $17 million to law enforcement to help curb opioid and heroin abuse. This new funding will help disrupt drug trafficking, increase the use of naloxone, and increase training for providers regarding prescribing opioids. They are also asking Congress to approve $1.1 billion in additional funding to increase treatment access for people who misuse the drugs, according to The New York Times.