Member-supported news for Southern California
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
Support for KPCC comes from:

California's uninsured cut in half under Obamacare, survey finds

Advocates say the next big step in the rollout of the Affordable Care Act is making sure people who are newly insured know how to use their coverage.
Adrian Florido
A new survey finds that the rate of uninsured Californians has fallen by half since the Affordable Care Act began expanding access nine months ago.

The percentage of uninsured Californians has been cut in half since the federal health law began expanding coverage nine months ago, according to a new national survey.

In September of 2013, 22 percent of California adults were uninsured. By last month, that number had fallen to just 11 percent, the biggest drop among the nation’s six largest states.

The survey of more than 4,400 people by the Commonwealth Fund, a national healthcare foundation, also found that nationwide, the uninsured rate fell from 20 percent to 15 percent during the same period.

Recent national polls have recorded similar drops in the rate of the nation’s uninsured under the Affordable Care Act. A recent Gallup poll found that in April, the national uninsured rate stood at 13.4 percent, the lowest number since the organization began tracking it in 2008.

The Commonwealth Fund survey found that 61 percent of those who were newly insured said they felt better off thanks to their new coverage. And nearly four out of five said they were somewhat or very satisfied with their new coverage.

The survey also found that since last year, awareness of the Affordable Care Act has increased significantly, although that awareness still lags among poorer Americans. For example, more than half of the poorest people surveyed still did not know that the federal health law makes subsidies available to help pay for health insurance.