Facing South

INSTITUTE INDEX: What's at stake in the Supreme Court's health-law case

Number of days this week the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments over the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the 2010 health-insurance reform law also known as "Obamacare": 3

Number of Americans who are currently uninsured, a problem ACA addresses in multiple ways: 50 million

Number of states that have challenged ACA's expansion of Medicaid, the joint federal-state health care program for the poor and disabled, arguing that the largely federally-financed expansion is somehow coercive: 26

Of those 26 states, number in the South: 7*

Rank of the South among U.S. regions with the highest percentage of uninsured adult residents: 1

Percentage by which the rate of uninsured adults in the South exceeds that of the East: 190

Estimated number of Americans who have already used ACA provisions to get free preventative care through their insurance plans that previously would have been subject to co-pays or deductibles: 86 million

Amount saved by senior citizens because of prescription drug discounts included in the law: $1.5 billion

Number of small businesses that can now claim tax deductions for providing health insurance to employees: 4 million

Number of people who have been able to receive health care because of the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan created by ACA: 50,000

Year in which that provision will apply to all adults, ensuring that people with existing medical conditions have access to care: 2014

If the Supreme Court strikes down the law's individual mandate to purchase health insurance, estimated percentage increase in premiums for individuals who don't get insurance through their job: 2.4 to 40

Number fewer people who would have insurance coverage without the mandate: 12.5 million to 24 million

Amount by which repealing ACA would increase the federal deficit: $210 billion

Month in which the Supreme Court is expected to hand down its decision on the law: 6/2012

* Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Texas

(Click on figure to go to source. Photo from SEIU's Flickr photostream.)

Facing South
Facing South
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