The numbers are historic. That’s the message from a new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report that shows the number of uninsured Americans is now at an all-time low.
Fewer than 1 in 10 Americans lacked health insurance in 2015, the first time ever in the nation’s history that the uninsured rate has fallen so low….It was the first time the percentage of people without some form of health coverage has gone into single digits, and a 2.4 percentage point drop from 2014.
While supporters of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) claim these numbers prove the program is working, critics of the ACA see it differently. According to a story in the Wall Street Journal, “For critics of the law, the number is a sign of its (the ACA’s) shortcomings, and that essentially, it has required too much expenditure and effort to do too little.”
How big has the drop in the uninsured been? According to Fortune Magazine, “The act was instated in 2010, at which point the rate of uninsured Americans was 16%. The following year it dropped to 14.4%, and the next year it went down again to 11.5%. As of 2015, nine out of 10 Americans were insured. Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell told the (Wall Street) Journal that it was “the first year in our nation’s history that fewer than 1 in 10 Americans lacked health insurance.”
In an interesting twist to this new data, the Washington Post wrote:
On the very same day that we learned that the Affordable Care Act has brought the uninsured rate down into single digits, it emerged that (Donald) Trump thinks advocating for the repeal of the ACA will be a big political winner for him in the presidential campaign.
The Hill reported that Trump privately agreed with GOP Senators that he is certain, absolutely certain, that Obamacare will be a big political albatross for his general election opponent, Hillary Clinton.
We would love to hear your thoughts on this new data and what it means. First, what do you think about these new numbers and do you believe it is significant to see them at all-time lows? Do you think it’s a sign that the the Affordable Care Act is working? And finally – what do you think about the reported claim by Donald Trump that, despite the success of these numbers, he can use the ACA against his opponent in the Presidential election?
Generating meaningful conversations around the most important health topics of the day is a critical piece of our long-term goal to one day make Arizona the Healthiest State in the Nation!