How Obamacare Increased Insurance Coverage in Every State

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31. New Hampshire
> Ppt change in uninsured rate, 2012-2015: -5.4
> Expanded Medicaid?:
yes
> Pct. population without health insurance, 2012: 10.6% (13th lowest)
> Pct. population without health insurance, 2015: 5.2% (9th lowest)

Though New Hampshire did not implement its own exchange marketplace, it expanded Medicaid coverage to those earning less than 138% of the federal poverty rate. As a result of the expansion, an estimated 43,000 low-income state residents gained health insurance.

Three years ago, 10.6% of New Hampshire residents did not have health insurance, the 13th lowest rate of uninsured population in the country. The rate improved during the open enrollment period, and today only 5.2% of New Hampshire’s population is without insurance, the ninth lowest share of all states. Out-of-pocket costs for health insurance recipients were inline with national costs. The average premium for a 40-year-old, nonsmoking man was $254 versus the national average of $256.

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32. Maryland
> Ppt change in uninsured rate, 2012-2015: -5.4
> Expanded Medicaid?:
yes
> Pct. population without health insurance, 2012: 10.3% (12th lowest)
> Pct. population without health insurance, 2015: 4.9% (8th lowest)

After open enrollment in the Health Insurance Marketplace began on October 1, 2013, health insurance coverage in every state increased. The percentage of Maryland’s population without health insurance decreased from 10.3% in 2012 to 4.9% as of March this year, the eighth smallest uninsured rate nationwide. In contrast, 9.1% of Americans do not have health insurance.

Preferring to manage its own exchange market, Maryland established the Maryland Health Connection in 2011. The state was rewarded for its early compliance, receiving $6.2 million Early Innovator grant from the federal government. However, according to Kowalski, Maryland’s exchange was one of five state websites to experience severe glitches. According to Kowalski’s research, website problems at the outset hurt enrollment numbers and increased costs.

33. New Jersey
> Ppt change in uninsured rate, 2012-2015: -5.5
> Expanded Medicaid?:
yes
> Pct. population without health insurance, 2012: 12.7% (22nd lowest)
> Pct. population without health insurance, 2015: 7.2% (23rd lowest)

After open enrollment in the Health Insurance Marketplace began on October 1, 2013, health insurance coverage in every state increased dramatically. In New Jersey, the improvement was relatively modest. The percentage of the population without health insurance decreased from 12.7% in 2012 to 7.2% as of March this year, the 18th smallest decrease nationwide.

In an effort to establish its own state-run exchange, the state legislature passed the New Jersey Health Benefit Exchange Act on October 18, 2012. However, Governor Chris Christie vetoed the bill, and New Jersey residents have to get coverage through the federal program.

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34. Montana
> Ppt change in uninsured rate, 2012-2015: -5.6
> Expanded Medicaid?:
yes
> Pct. population without health insurance, 2012: 18.0% (8th highest)
> Pct. population without health insurance, 2015: 12.4% (8th highest)

Since open enrollment under the ACA began, Montana’s rate of uninsured residents dropped from 18.0% in 2012 — eighth highest at the time — to an estimated 12.4% this year. The improvement was not sharp enough to move Montana out of the 10 states with the highest share of uninsured residents, as the state still has the eighth highest share of uninsured residents.

The state did not opt to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, but if it had, the HHS estimates an additional 38,000 Montanans would have been covered today. While this would have strengthened the improvement in Montana, it is a relatively small projected increase and would not significantly change the uninsured rate.

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35. Georgia
> Ppt change in uninsured rate, 2012-2015: -5.9
> Expanded Medicaid?:
no
> Pct. population without health insurance, 2012: 18.4% (5th highest)
> Pct. population without health insurance, 2015: 12.5% (6th highest)

In 2012, before the state’s Health Insurance Marketplace open enrollment period began, 1,792,319 Georgia residents, or 18.4% of the population, did not have health insurance. Since then, the state’s uninsured rate dropped by 5.9 percentage point. The percentage of Americans without health insurance dropped by 5.7 percentage points over that three-year period. The state did not opt to expand Medicaid under the ACA. The HHS estimates that if Medicaid were to be expanded, it could provide an additional half a million low-income residents health insurance and the uninsured rate would drop to 7.7%.