Wednesday, December 17, 2014

African-Americans are less likely to see benefits under ObamaCare compared to other racial groups

While Hispanics, American Indians and Alaska natives have seen “dramatic” increases in healthcare coverage over the last year, obtaining coverage has been tougher for black Americans, largely because they disproportionately live in states that have not expanded Medicaid, according to an extensive 65-page report by The Urban Institute, a nonprofit research group. More than half of all black individuals and families live in the 21 states that have not expanded Medicaid eligibility, according to the report. As a result, about 1.4 million black individuals are stuck in an eligibility gap where they make too little to purchase coverage but too much to qualify for Medicaid. The report projects that white Americans will see the biggest gains under ObamaCare, with the population's uninsured rate falling by nearly 52%. Among minority groups, Hispanics stand to benefit the most, though the population continues to have the highest uninsured rate, at about one-fifth. A total of 6.6 million Hispanics gained coverage, a jump that is expected to drop the group's uninsured rate by about 40% by 2016. Hispanics individuals and families are more likely to benefit from their states’ Medicaid expansion, though millions more could still gain insurance if all states took the step. Out of the 10 states with the largest Hispanic populations, three states — Texas, Florida and Georgia — have not expanded Medicaid. That compares to the 10 states with the largest black populations, of which only Maryland and Delaware have expanded Medicaid.

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