3 Key Findings on the Newly Insured

Earlier this month, HHS announced more than 8 million people had signed up for health plans through the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act exchanges, surpassing the Congressional Budget Office's initial projection of 7 million for the first year.

The characteristics of the newly insured population can be used to assess how well the PPACA is working at expanding health insurance coverage, according to The Urban Institute. In a study funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Urban Institute researchers analyzed data collected through their March 2014 Health Reform Monitoring Survey to examine the demographic characteristics and health status of the newly insured under the PPACA. Here are three of their key findings.

1. Most of the newly insured are in the income brackets targeted by the health insurance exchanges and Medicaid expansion. Nearly half of the newly insured adults have annual incomes at or below 138 percent of the federal poverty level, and 40.1 percent have incomes between 139 percent and 399 percent of the poverty level.

2. The newly insured are more likely to report fair or poor health (17.4 percent) than adults who had coverage for the full year at the time of the monitoring survey (11.8 percent).

3. The newly insured population doesn't have a strong connection to the healthcare system, with 35.7 percent reporting they didn't have a usual source of care. Additionally, 47.9 percent said it had been a year or more since their last routine checkup. By contrast, 18.9 percent of full-year insured adults at the time of the survey were without a usual source of care, and 30.8 percent hadn't undergone a routine checkup in the previous year.

More Articles on the Newly Insured:
The Impact of Healthcare Reform on Hospitals and Health Systems
4 Key Characteristics of the Newly Insured Population
4 Key Findings on the PPACA and Medicaid Enrollment 


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