Verma: ACA caused uptick in uninsured

CMS Administrator Seema Verma says an increase in the number of uninsured Americans between 2017-18 is the result of rising premiums and insufficient subsidies to buy health insurance under the ACA.

"Simply put, there are too many people without subsidies who cannot afford coverage under Obamacare," she wrote in a blog for CMS.  

Her comments come in response to a report from the U.S. Census Bureau that found the uninsured rate grew 0.5 percentage points between 2017-18. The report notes the percentage of people with public coverage — Medicare and Medicaid — decreased 0.4 percentage points, while the percentage of people with private coverage did not change. News coverage has focused on this change in Medicaid coverage.

Ms. Verma took issue with this. "The fact that most of the movement into the ranks of the uninsured occurred among people with higher incomes who don't receive subsidies strongly suggests the change is due to affordability problems among higher income people than any issue with Medicaid coverage for lower-income people," she wrote.  

Read her full blog post here. Read the Census report here.


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