Workers Gaining Health Insurance Coverage Under the ACA

Research Report

Workers Gaining Health Insurance Coverage Under the ACA


One major aim of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) was to increase health insurance coverage. This brief highlights the ACA’s impact on insurance coverage in working families. Using data from the American Community Survey and the Current Population Survey, we examine changes in total coverage for workers and their family members from 2010 to 2015, by occupation type and state. We find that more than 9.5 million workers and 5.2 million of their family members gained coverage under the first six years of the ACA. We further find that coverage gains were greater for occupations that, in 2010, had lower coverage rates, lower employer-sponsored insurance coverage rates, lower wage rates, and lower weekly earnings. Finally, we observe greater gains for workers residing in Medicaid expansion states. These findings suggest that the ACA coverage provisions were well targeted to need.


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