Uninsured Rate Declines in 2011; Young Adults Continue Gains in Coverage

eAlert f7566c90-ddaf-44a7-95f5-80adfea9a88a

<p>New data released by the U.S. Census Bureau today show that the number of people without health insurance declined by 1.3 million in 2011, falling to 48.6 million people. After a decade in which the number of uninsured increased by 12 million people, the latest numbers suggest the country is at an important turning point, say The Commonwealth Fund’s Sara R. Collins, Karen Davis, and Tracy Garber in a <a href="/blog/2012/13-million-fewer-people-were-uninsured-2011-young-adults-continue-make-gains-coverage">new blog post</a>. </p><p>Young adults made strong gains in coverage, continuing a trend that began in 2010 with the passage of the Affordable Care Act, which enabled young adults to stay on or join their parents’ health plan. And despite the continuing weakness in the job market, the share of people in the United States with employer-based coverage remained statistically unchanged, standing at about 55 percent. For people without job-based health insurance, public insurance, including Medicaid, Medicare, and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), continued to be a critical source of coverage. </p>
<p>"Starting in 2014, when the Affordable Care Act is fully implemented, Americans will have new affordable and comprehensive health insurance options, which will significantly reduce the number of people in each state who lack health insurance," the authors say. </p>