The number of uninsured Americans in 2017 marked its largest increase in one year since the implementation of the Affordable Care Act’s coverage expansion. The number of Americans who do not have health insurance rose by 1.3 percentage points last year. According to Gallup-Sharecare Well-being Index, that 1.3 point increase represents an estimated 3.2 million Americans who entered the ranks of the uninsured in 2017.
People between the ages of 18 and 25, black and Hispanic people and persons whose annual household income is smaller than 36,000 dollars are among those who saw the biggest declines in coverage.
The number of uninsured people fell to a record low in the final quarter of 2016, dropping to just 10.9 percent, The Hill reports. Even though there was an increase last year, the percentage of people who do not have insurance is still low compared to its peak of 18 percent in the third quarter of 2013., prior to the implementation of the ACA’s health-care exchanges and the requirement that most adults have health insurance or pay a penalty. The new Gallup-Sharecare data shows that 20.3 percent of the Americans purchased their own health insurance coverage through the ASA’c health-care exchanges. That is down 1.0 point from 21.3 percent at the end of 2016.
The decline is a reversal of a trend seen since the ACA’s individual mandate took effect in the fourth quarter of 2013. According to Gallup, between then and 2016, the number of adults who purchased their own coverage increased 3.7 percent. The Gallup-Sharecare data is based on phone interviews with 25,072 U.S. adults, and was conducted from Oct. 1 to Dec. 31, 2017. Its margin of error is 1 percentage point.