The Effects of the Affordable Care Act on Seasonal Agricultural Workers

December 07, 2022


This study investigates the effects of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) policies (Medicaid expansion, health insurance premium subsidy, and tax penalty) on farmworkers' health insurance coverage and healthcare utilization. Using the National Agricultural Worker Survey, we find that the ACA policies substantially raised the share of seasonal farmworkers with medical insurance. It significantly increased workers' use of preventive medical services and decreased the use of hospitals, including emergency rooms, which was a goal of the law's proponents. These effects did not significantly differ between workers with and without a pre-existing medical condition.