Obamacare continues historic downward slide

Obamacare continues historic downward slide by Joan McCarterFollow • • In the uninsured rate, that is. Gallup reports another low in the uninsured rate, which they've been tracking for the past seven years. The rate fell another half of a percentage point, from 11.9 percent to 11.4 percent, in the last quarter. The uninsured rate has dropped nearly six percentage points since the fourth quarter of 2013, just before the requirement for Americans to carry health insurance took effect. The latest quarterly uninsured rate is the lowest Gallup and Healthways have recorded since daily tracking of this metric began in 2008. […] Gallup's monthly trend indicates that the decline in the uninsured rate took place late in the first quarter—after the Feb. 15 deadline to purchase health insurance—and that the lower rate held steady throughout the second quarter. The uninsured rate fell to 11.3% by March, and the April, May and June averages were similar. From a long-range perspective, the uninsured rate has declined across nearly all key subgroups since 2013. But the sharpest declines have occurred among Hispanics, blacks and lower-income Americans. The uninsured rate among Hispanics declined by 9.6 points from the fourth quarter of 2013—the last full quarter of interviewing before the requirement that Americans carry health insurance took effect. Similarly, the percentage of uninsured blacks dipped 8.9 points over this period. Across major subgroups, those making less than $36,000 in annual household income have seen the sharpest drop—9.9 points since the fourth quarter of 2013. Remember how Obamacare was going to destroy insurance for everyone, and how employers were going to stop providing coverage? Yeah, that didn't happen either. The rate of people insured by an employer has remained pretty much stable since 2013, 44.2 percent in the final quarter of that year and 43.4 percent in the second quarter of this year. But now 20.9 percent of people report they are in a plan bought on the individual market by themselves or a family member, up from 17.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013. The percentage covered by Medicaid has increased from 6.9 percent to 9.5.

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