There 27.3 million uninsured Americans.
That is 8.6% of the population.
Who are these uninsured Americans?
When the ACA was implemented the CBO projected that 22 million would be enrolled by 2016. The actual enrollment was 12.7 million in 2016, and the latest reports for 2018 show only about 8.8m enrolled in individual health insurance.
But 27 million remain without health insurance.
Who are the uninsured?
The Kaiser Family Foundation report (link) provides some insights.
- 75% are full-time working Americans
- 45% report the costs are too high
- 20% (or 5.5 million) earn greater than 400% of poverty
- Earning more than $48,000 for an individual
- Earning more than $98,000 for a family of 4
- Not eligible for federal premium subsidies
It is important for those us with coverage to understand the pricing of individual health insurance via the ACA marketplaces. If you household income is below 400% of federal poverty level - you do not pay the actual premium. You pay only a % of your income.
You can review the subsidies at Kaiser Family Foundation.
Let's review a few scenarios for family of 4:
- $25,000 household income: pays $0 (government pays for the plan)
- $50,000 household income: pays 5% of income of $2,500 annually
- $75,000 household income: pays 9.5% of income or $7,125 annually
- $100,000 household income: pays the entire premium or $12,000-$16,000 based on age
It is easy to understand why there are so many uninsured.
Health insurance (in its current form) is extremely expensive.
Without an employer or a government subsidy, it is simply not affordable.
Consider the health insurance premium data:
- Average Individual Premium: $393 monthly
- However, actual premiums could be as high as $800 monthly (based on age & zip code)
- Average Family Premium: $1,021 monthly
- However, actual premiums could be as high as $2,000 monthly (based on age & zip code)
This is why we need solutions that lower the costs.
Lower health insurance premium costs.
Lower health care costs.
2018 will be an interesting year. The combination of the new tax law (which eliminates the individual mandate penalty) and the President's Executive Order on Health Insurance (allowing for the creation of association health plans) create incentives for new plans, new ideas, and much more. The 2 changes open the door for innovation. Can this innovation drive down insurance premiums?