Over the past five years, about 16.4 million previously uninsured people have gained insurance under the Affordable Care Act, the Obama Administration announced Monday.
The Department of Health and Human Services released new figures on the insured population one week ahead of the fifth anniversary of the Act’s passage. HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell said Monday it’s the “largest reduction in the uninsured in four decades.”
“When it comes to the key metrics of affordability, access, and quality, the evidence shows that the Affordable Care Act is working, and families, businesses and taxpayers are better off as a result,” Burwell said in a statement.
About 14.1 million adults gained insurance since insurance marketplaces opened up in October 2013 and another 2.3 million young adults were able to stay on their parents insurance until age 26 under the law. According to the data, the uninsured rate is slightly lower in states that have expanded Medicaid coverage compared to those that have not.
The uninsured rate has dropped significantly for minorities under the law. Since 2013, 2.3 million black adults have gained insurance resulting in 9.2 percent point drop in the uninsured rate. About 29.5% of Hispanic adults are still uninsured, the highest uninsured rate among American adults, but some 4.2 million have gained coverage.
The news comes as the fate of the Affordable Care Act lies in hands of the Supreme Court which heard oral arguments in a case that could essentially gut the President’s signature health law.