The number of Californians that received health insurance under the Affordable Care Act is steadly increasing after years of robust enrollment.
More than two-thirds of Californians who lacked health insurance prior to the rollout of the Affordable Care Act are now covered, according to a recent analysis of the state’s healthcare programs. The LA Times reports that a stunning number of previously uninsured citizens are finally able to access the health care they need.
A survey examined a group of 2,001 California adults who did not have health insurance before the Affordable Care Act expanded multiple healthcare programs in 2014. A previous version of the survey showed that 58 percent of uninsured California residents had signed up for coverage after the first open enrollment period.
The breakdown went as follows – 34 percent of newly covered people were enrolled in the state’s low-income program, Medi-Cal, 14 percent were received insurance from their employers, 12 percent enrolled through Covered California, and 8 percent received coverage from other sources. There are 32 percent of Californians currently living with no health insurance, down from a level of 42 percent last year.
44 percent of residents reportedly decline to sign up for insurance due to the costs. 40 percent of uninsured people have lived without insurance for their entire life.
The largest chunk of uninsured Americans are those who entered the country illegally. As it stands, illegal immigrants are prohibited from enrolling under the ACA.
Initial surveys of the newly covered Californians show that people feel like cost will be less of an issue under the new programs. There is still a lot of work to do, as almost a third of Californians are still living without health insurance. The data are encouraging, but President Obama will not deem the law a success until coverage is available for all Americans.