A significantly higher percentage of uninsured adults aged 18-64 years reported that they gained health insurance in 2014, compared with 2013, according to a report from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

Between the first part of 2013 and the first part of 2014, just over 30% of uninsured nonelderly adults gained health insurance. For a similar period of time between 2012 and 2013, less than 25% of uninsured people gained health insurance. There was almost no difference in the percentage of insured adults who lost insurance for both years, with 6% losing insurance in 2013 and 5.5% losing insurance in 2014, the AHRQ reported.

Since most of the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) interviews were completed in the first 3 months of the year, before the marketplace open enrollment period ended, the MEPS data on which the report is based “reflect some, but not all, of the increases in coverage obtained through the Affordable Care Act’s Health Insurance Marketplaces ,” the AHRQ noted.

The greatest increase in newly insured adults among the measured groups was in adults in good health, for whom the percentage increased from 19.4% in 2013 to 28.6% in 2014. The greatest decrease in insurance coverage lost was in Hispanic adults, for whom the percentage fell from just over 12% to just under 9%.

States that expanded Medicare saw an increase in newly insured adults, as did states that did not expand Medicare (27% in 2013 vs. 33% in 2014 in Medicare expansion states; 22% in 2013 vs. 28% in 2014 in nonexpansion states). States that did not expand, however, saw a slight increase of adults who had lost insurance between the first parts of 2013 and 2014 (6.8%), compared with 2012 and 2013 (6.4%), the AHRQ reported.

lfranki@frontlinemedcom.com

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