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Nine months later, what impact has the ACA had on California’s uninsured?

Nine months ago millions of Americans gained access to health care coverage through Medicaid programs and health insurance exchanges. Millions of Americans also endured the technical glitches, remained persistent, and completed the application process. Today we learned from a Commonwealth Fund survey that the uninsured rate for those 19 to 64 years of age declined from 20% to 15% between July-September 2013 and April-June 2014. This means that an estimated 9.5 million Americans gained access to health coverage.

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As our name implies, we are more than thrilled about the impact the ACA is making. The most significant decline for those who were uninsured happened among young adults ages 19 to 34, falling from 28% to 18% with 5.7 million young adults gaining coverage.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can find other notable highlights from the decline of the uninsured rate below:

Adults with low incomes and Latinos experienced the largest decline in uninsured rates, dropping from 36% to 23% for Latinos, and from 35% to 24% for those with incomes less than 138 percent of the federal poverty level.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Obviously, states that expanded their Medicaid programs (like California) experienced a more significant drop in the share of people who were previously uninsured, which decreased from 28% to 18%.

Because we’re awesome, it should come as no surprise that California’s uninsured rate declined from 22% to 11% *cue confetti and streamers*.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What’s even more important is that 60% of adults who gained coverage through health insurance marketplaces or Medicaid programs have started using it. These individuals reported either visiting a doctor or hospital, or filling a prescription. The ACA is helping to do exactly what it was intended to do, reduce the number of uninsured Americans by providing greater access to health coverage. Even some Republicans appear to be happy; 74% of those newly insured reported being pleased with the plans they bought. As one of the states leading the nation in ACA implementation, let’s continue to be dedicated to reducing the number of uninsured Californians. As you can see, we’re on the right track!

 

For the full issue brief by Commonwealth, click here.