One of the chief goals of the Affordable Care Act was to expand insurance coverage so that all Americans could have access to quality health care. How’s that working out?
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, about 20 million people have gained coverage because of the ACA — either signing up for insurance through one of the marketplaces established by the law or enrolling in Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program.
All told, the sign-ups drove the uninsured rate down from 15.7 percent in 2011 to 10.1 percent in 2014, according to the latest figures from the U.S. Census Bureau. A further decline in 2015 is anticipated, given the increased volume of people signing up for insurance last year.
But behind these positive trends lie areas of deep concern to health policy leaders. In a series of polls, NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that a surprising share of Americans, particularly those with low incomes, are having problems with the quality of care they receive.
Results for the individual states: