Report confirms sharp decrease in rate of uninsured

The uninsured rate for nonelderly American adults dropped from 17.7 percent to 12.8 percent between September 2013 and December 2014, according to a recent report from the Urban Institute, which cited data from its Health Reform Monitoring Survey.

That number is consistent with a Gallup poll conducted in early January, which found that the uninsured rate had dropped to 12.9 percent by the end of 2014.

Here are some other notable statistics from the Urban Institute report:

  • For states that expanded Medicaid by December 2014, the uninsured rate dropped from 16.2 percent to 10 percent. For states that have decided against Medicaid expansion, the uninsured rate fell from 19.6 percent to 16.3 percent. The same Gallup poll found that 10 of the top 11 states that experienced the largest drop in the uninsured rate between 2013 and 2014 expanded Medicaid, FierceHealthPayer previously reported.
  • Coverage for adults ages 18 to 30 increased 6.3 percentage points, compared to 4.2 percentage points for ages 31 to 49 and 4.7 percentage points for ages 50 to 64.
  • Americans who received federal subsidies and assistance through Medicaid programs experienced the largest coverage gains. Between September 2013 and December 2014, coverage for low-income adults rose 10 percentage points.

In an effort to shed light on who got coverage during past open enrollment period, McKinsey surveyed roughly 3,000 people who either had individual insurance plans or were uninsured but eligible for Affordable Care Act qualified health plan. Here's what McKinsey found:

  • Among those who were persistently uninsured--Americans who were without coverage in both 2014 and 2015--77 percent did not shop for coverage because they believed they could not afford the cost of plans, while 45 percent believed they did not need health insurance.
  • Among those who were enrolled in a 2014 plan--both Affordable Care Act or non-ACA plans--but switched to a new plan in 2015, 55 percent did so because they believed their monthly price increased too much. Last year, individual market enrollees paid higher monthly premiums on average after ACA implementation.
  • For those enrolled in a non-ACA plan before 2014, 50 percent said they were happy with their insurance they had before 2014, while 37 percent thought their current ACA plan was a better option.

For more:
- here's the Urban Institute study
- check out the McKinsey report (.pdf)