Insurance coverage

Health insurance coverage is on the rise, but many are still uninsured or underinsured

Commonwealth Fund survey predicts situation will worsen as pandemic measures expire

As the number of Americans without health insurance nears historic lows, many of these changes have come about due to policy changes enacted to help increase coverage during COVID-19, according to a investigation of The Commonwealth Fund. However, a large number of patients are insufficiently covered and this situation will only worsen when the temporary measures to combat the pandemic expire.

The survey found that in 2022, 43% of working-age adults were underinsured. They were either uninsured (9%), had a coverage gap (11%), or their coverage did not provide them with affordable access to healthcare (23%). The vast majority (79%) of people who were uninsured at the time of the survey had been without coverage for a year or more. People who had not been covered for a year or more were disproportionately poor, young, and Latino/Hispanic; in fair or poor health or living with a chronic health problem; and/or living in the South.

Of those with employer coverage, 29% were underinsured, with the number rising to 44% for those with coverage purchased on the individual market.

According to the survey, these uncovered costs affect patient care, with 46% of respondents saying they skipped or delayed care due to cost, and 42% said they had trouble paying medical bills or paying off debt. medical. Nearly half (49%) said they would be unable to pay an unexpected $1,000 medical bill within 30 days, including 68% of low-income adults, 69% of black adults and 63% of Latino/Hispanic adults.

Cost-saving measures taken by patients included not going to the doctor when sick, skipping a recommended follow-up visit or test, not seeing a specialist when recommended, or not not fill a prescription.

A large number of voters say the president and Congress should make health care a top priority: 68% Democrats, 55% Independents, 46% Republicans.

The survey used data from 6,301 respondents aged 19 to 64.