Trump Oversees Biggest Single-Year Increase in Percentage of Uninsured Under Obamacare

Danny Woods
January 17, 2018

Young adults age 18 to 25 and Americans earning less than $36,000 each saw a 2 percentage point increase.

Also, many insurers withdrew from the exchanges and the remaining carriers raised their rates, which may have prompted some consumers to forgo coverage.

While the 12.2% uninsured rate is still much lower than the pre-ACA rate of 18%, Gallup-Sharecare said that the policies from President Donald Trump could cause the number of people without coverage to continue to increase.

"The 1.3-point increase in the uninsured rate during 2017 is the largest single-year increase Gallup and Sharecare have measured since beginning to track the rate in 2008, including the period before the Affordable Care Act (ACA) went into effect", Gallup-Sharecare said in a release.

The increases reverse a consistent series of drops in the uninsured rate since the Affordable Care Act, as Obamacare is formally known, began taking full effect in January 2014.

The uninsured rate increased most among young adults and black, Hispanic, and low-income Americans past year, according to Gallup.

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Among subgroups, the biggest jump in the uninsured occurred with non-Hispanic blacks at 2.3 percent increase.

For supporters of the ACA, the blame for more people opting not to be insured falls on President Donald Trump.

That may have led some Americans to question whether the administration would enforce the penalty for not having insurance, according to Gallup-Sharecare.

Gallup cited various likely factors for the 1.3-point increase in 2017, such as increased plan costs for consumers due to some insurers leaving the ACA exchanges, as well as uncertainty previous year surrounding legislative efforts to dismantle the ACA.

"This may have caused some Americans, especially those who failed to qualify for federal subsidies, to forego insurance", Gallup's write-up said.

The tax bill passed by Congress last month included that gutting of the Obamacare individual mandate.in the next decade because of that repeal, although some analysts say the increase will be less dramatic than that.

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