The Rate of Uninsured Latinos Soared in 2017


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For the first time since the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in 2012, the rate of uninsured Americans rose during the fourth quarter of 2017.

The uninsured rate rose 1.3 percentage points from to 12.2% from its all-time low of 10.9% at the end of 2016, CNN Money reports according to a Gallup Poll. The increase reflects roughly 3.2 million new uninsured Americans in the U.S.

The uninsured rate for both blacks (2.3 percentage points) and Latinos (2.2 percentage points).

The ACA-based healthcare exchanges opened in 2014, the same year that Medicaid expansion began. One of the central tenets of the ACA was its individual mandate, which required all Americans to obtain health insurance or incur a tax penalty.

Image via CNN Money

Those circumstances were credited with helping reverse the “soaring” uninsured rate in the U.S., which hit an all-time high of 18% in 2013. The ACA proved to be a boon for Latinos, which were (and still are) the largest uninsured population in the country.

So, what is behind the rise in uninsured Americans?

Several factors are likely the reason for the increase at the end of last year:

  • The individual mandate was repealed last year by the current administration.
  • Many insurers withdrew from the healthcare exchanges.
  • The remaining providers raised their rates.
  • Nearly half a million fewer people signed up through the exchanges during Open Enrollment.

The Gallup Poll expects the uninsured rate will rise further in the years ahead.

“President Donald Trump signed a tax bill into law in December that included a repeal of the individual mandate. Without this requirement to have health insurance, it is likely that some Americans will drop their coverage,” according to the poll. “Rising insurance premiums, which are expected to continue to increase, could also result in some Americans forgoing health coverage.”

What can you do?

Make sure Latinos know the value of having health insurance, like they are doing in San Antonio to connect neighbors to health, and what they’re doing in Colorado to go door-to-door to help improve access to healthcare!


By The Numbers By The Numbers



of Latinos remain without health insurance coverage

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