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HHS: 16.4 million Americans gained health insurance under ACA

New data finds rate of uninsured most significant in states that expanded Medicaid, among African Americans and Latinos

About 16.4 million Americans have gained health insurance coverage since implementation of the Affordable Care Act, according to data released Monday by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). 

HHS discussed the data with reporters Monday morning. Here's how they broke it down:

  • The overall total includes 14.1 million adults who gained insurance; 3.4 million were young adults (ages 19 to 25) who gained insurance by remaining on their parents' plans.
  • In mid-2013, the uninsured rate was 20.3 percent. That number dropped to 13.2 percent by March 2015. "This is the largest reduction in the uninsured in four decades," noted HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell.
  • The baseline uninsured rate for young adults dropped from 34.1 percent in mid-2010 to 26.7 percent in mid-2013.
  • Insurance coverage gains were strong in Medicaid expansion states; there, uninsurance rates dropped from 18.2 percent before ACA implementation to 10.8 percent as of March 2015. In the non-expansion states, the uninsurance rate dropped from 23.4 percent to 16.5 percent over the same timeframe.

African Americans and Latinos saw a larger decline in their uninsurance rate that whites, though both groups started from a higher baseline uninsured rate that whites. This data is consistent with recent a recent Gallup poll released earlier this year, FierceHealthPayer previously reported.

In addition, the agency said that more than half of those who enrolled in 2014 returned to the marketplaces in 2015. Finally, 25 percent more insurers offered plans in the second open enrollment period compared to the first one.

"This data shows that the ACA is working," HHS said on the call.

For more:
- here's the HHS report (.pdf)

Related Articles:
CBO: Uninsured rate dropping, subsidized coverage costing government less
Open enrollment in ACA plans nears 11.7 million
Uninsured rate plunges to 12.9 percent