For Consumers

Five year anniversary of the Affordable Care Act - uninsured rate drops nearly 40 percent

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Overall uninsured rate in Washington

March 23, 2015

OLYMPIA, Wash. – The number of uninsured people in Washington state has dropped nearly 40 percent from 970,000 or 14 percent at the end of 2013 to 600,000 or 8.65 percent at the end of 2014.

“Health reform has clearly succeeded in Washington state,” said Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler. “Thanks to the federal Affordable Care Act and our state’s decision to expand Apple Health, we’ve seen a nearly 40 percent drop in the number of uninsured.”

 

In addition to lowering the number of people without health insurance, the Affordable Care Act is responsible for:

 

  • A 50 percent increase in the number of health insurers entering the Washington market

 

  • Doubling the health plan choices for consumers to 230 plans in the individual market

 

  • A record-low average rate increase of 2 percent

 

Other benefits to Washington consumers under the Affordable Care Act include:

 

  • New coverage options for young adults

 

  • Preventive services with no deductible or co-pay

 

  • Increased authority over unreasonable premium increases

 

  • A ban on lifetime limits on health benefits

 

  • No discrimination allowed for pre-existing conditions

 

  • Guaranteed coverage for essential health benefits

 

  • Help for seniors to afford prescription drugs

 

“For years people have struggled to find and keep affordable, quality health insurance,” said Kreidler. “We have a lot more work to do, but we should take a moment to reflect and be proud of everything we’ve accomplished to date.”

Release No. 15-11