The number of Americans without health insurance fell by one million people in 2021, according to US Census Bureau data released yesterday.
Why is this important: Despite COVID-19 and the economic uncertainty it has created, the uninsured rate has remained stable due to improved Affordable Care Act subsidies and continued Medicaid coverage provisions that the Congress has passed in response to the pandemic.
By the numbers: 8.3% or 27.2 million Americans were missing health insurance at some point in 2021. This compared to an uninsured rate of 8.6% or 28.3 million in 2020.
- It’s also down from the 8.5% rate in 2018, before the COVID pandemic.
- Medicaid coverage has increased in 2021 by nearly one percentage point, to include about 19% of Americans, or 61.9 million people.
- The number of uninsured children also decreased from 2020 to 2021 due to an increase in public coverage. Before COVID, the number of uninsured children was increasing.
“It is certainly among the lowest” uninsured rates the United States has seen, Census Bureau deputy division chief Sharon Stern told reporters at a news conference in September. 13 press call.
But, but, but: The gains could be wiped out when the public health emergency ends, when states will have to redetermine their populations’ eligibility for Medicaid, said Larry Levitt, the Kaiser Family Foundation’s executive vice president for health policy.
What we are looking at: How many people affected by Medicaid redeterminations will move to ACA markets next year.
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