The Patient Protect and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), or simply Affordable Care Act (ACA)…OR just call it Obamacare; it was supposed to revolutionize healthcare in the U.S. Although the intent does not always determine the result, we cannot deny that the landscape of healthcare has changed slightly from the pre-ACA days.
In fact, you would be delighted to know that during those ACA days, the US Department of Health and Human Services claims that 20 million Americans have gained coverage as a result of the ACA’s passage in 2010. While they aren’t wrong to say that 20 million have gained coverage during the period, to blame this phenomenon on Obamacare is a mild stretch of reality. These are the perils of using survey data as opposed to literal enrollment information to apply an assessment. Of the 20 million, 2.3 million are reportedly attributed to young adults (19-25) from 2010-2013, who were allowed to stay on their parents’ plan until age 26 as a result of an Obamacare provision.
From the data released by The Heritage Foundation’s Edmund Haislmaier and Drew Gonshorowski:
“14 million people gained coverage from the end of 2013 to the end of 2015. Of those 14 million, 11.8 million gained their insurance through Medicaid and 2.2 million through private coverage.”
Additionally, “Enrollment in the individual market increased by 5.9 million and the self-insured employer market grew by 3.9 million. However, these increases were largely offset by an enrollment drop of 7.6 million people in fully insured employer group plans.” These are the inherent effects of employer cost that the right was screaming about before the 2010 inception of Obamacare.
The Huffington Post now cheers that 2016 ACA enrollments have exceeded 6 million, which beats the previously reported 2015 number, and puts America one step closer to eliminating the total amount of uninsured citizens (28.5 million in 2015).