Survey: Nearly 9 in 10 in U.S. Now Have Health Insurance

Personal Finance
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Survey: Nearly 9 in 10 Americans Now Have Health Insurance

Nearly 90% of Americans now say they have health insurance, marking a significant increase over last year, according to a new Gallup poll.

The extensive Gallup-Healthways survey, conducted the first three months of this year, found that 11.9% of adults were without coverage. That’s would translate to about 3.6 million fewer uninsured people than there were last fall, the Associated Press reported.

In 2013, before President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act took effect, roughly 8 in 10 people said they were covered, according to the survey, which has been conducted since 2008. This year’s survey was conducted as the annual enrollment period for coverage under the ACA was winding down.

“The Affordable Care Act had three major objectives: increase coverage, slow the rate of increase in costs and improve health,” Dan Witters, research director for the poll, told the AP. “The first one is clearly a win. Coverage is increasing; there is no question about it.”

About 14.75 million more adults have gotten coverage since fall 2013, when the ACA’s first enrollment period was about to start, according to the polling.

The survey found that Hispanics saw the biggest gain in coverage of any ethnic or racial group. The rate of uninsured dropped 8.3 percentage points among Hispanics since 2013.

People making less than $36,000 a year saw the biggest coverage increase based on income, with their uninsured rate dipping 8.7 points since 2013.

As the AP notes, the future of the ACA, popularly known as Obamacare, is in doubt.

The Supreme Court is expected to rule on a challenge to some aspects of the law. And an unfriendly Republican Congress could be emboldened to begin dismantling it if the GOP retains control in 2016.

Doug Gross is a staff writer covering personal finance for NerdWallet. Follow him on Twitter @doug_gross and on Google+.


 

Photo via iStock.