On May 17, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released its annual report about health insurance coverage in the United States. It showed an increase in the percentage of Americans with health insurance, and it also showed that much of that increase occurred after Obamacare began expanding health insurance.
In 2014, 11.5 percent of Americans lacked health insurance. By 2015, that percentage had dropped to 9.1. That means that roughly 7.4 million more people now have health insurance. While the number of uninsured people had already begun declining during the early 2010s, after Obama was elected, the biggest drop occurred after Obamacare began taking effect in 2014. Since then, millions of Americans have gotten insurance through the Obamacare marketplaces and Medicaid.
The CDC report is based on surveys and other data from 103,798 people under 65 years old. The report divided them into four broad ethnic groups: Hispanics, non-Hispanic whites, non-Hispanic blacks and non-Hispanic Asians. While Hispanics have the highest percentage of uninsured people, they also showed the greatest drop in the percentage of uninsured people, from 40.6 percent in 2013 to 27.7 percent in 2015. The other three groups also showed significant drops in the percentages of uninsured. By 2015, 14.4 percent of non-Hispanic blacks remained uninsured, as did 8.7 percent of non-Hispanic whites and 7.9 percent of non-Hispanic Asians.
Children, described as anybody 17 and younger, showed a modest drop from 5.5 percent in 2014 to 4.5 percent in 2015. Adults between 18 and 64 showed a drop from 16.3 percent to 12.8 percent in 2015. Further subdivisions of the adults revealed a dramatic drop in the percentage of the youngest adults. In 2010, 31.5 percent of adults between 18 and 24 lacked health insurance; by 2015, that percentage had dropped to 14.4 percent. The adults between 25 and 34 are now the most likely group to lack health insurance: as of 2015, 17.9 percent remain uninsured. As for the older groups, 14.5 percent of the adults between 35 and 44 still lack health insurance, as do 8.8 percent of the adults between 45 and 64.
The report also showed that while the vast majority of people have private insurance (69.7 percent as of 2015), the percentage of people getting public insurance is slowly increasing. As of 2015, 18.9 percent of people have public insurance compared to 10 percent back in 1997.
Some states also showed impressive drops in the percentage of uninsured people from 2014 to 2015. Vermont, Texas, New York, Nevada, Mississippi, Michigan, Kentucky, Illinois, Florida, Colorado, California and Arizona all showed declines of 3.1 percent or better in their numbers of uninsured citizens.