ACA: More Americans insured, but vast majority are less insured …

I’ve  been wrestling with a conundrum ..…

Mainstream media continues to tout the success of ObamaCare … always focusing on the number of previously uninsured folks who now have insurance.

Most recent CBO numbers say that about 19 million previously uninsureds now have insurance – mostly from Medicaid and subsidized ACA Exchange policies.

Now, about 80% of the non-elderly population is covered … but, about 36 million are still uninsured.

Said differently, over half of the previously uninsureds are still uninsured.



Let’s look at the cost …

ObamaCare added about $100 billion in annual government spending .

So, the cost per newly insured person is roughly $5,000 per newly insured person per year.

That sounds about right since an average individual health insurance policy is about $5,000 per year.


OK, so what’s the rub?

Some simple arithmetic suggests that the aggregate monetary amount of insurance provided to the full population of non-elderly citizens has actually declined.

Here’s my logic …


From above, 19 million folks got health insurance either “free” (think Medicaid) or subsidized through the ACA exchanges.

That’s the $100 billion per year.

Consider that to be the monetary value of additional insurance provided to the population.

But, to keep premiums under from skyrocketing – due to “natural” cost increases and the added ObamaCare mandates – policy deductibles have gone up dramatically … on average, by about $10,00 for the 158 million covered by company insurance plans.

For details, see Remember how your healthcare costs were going to go down by $2,500 per family?

The higher deductibles are, in effect, “lost” insurance coverage since folks are now paying out of their pockets instead of the insurance companies’ pockets.

So, in aggregate, folks in company-based plans have lost $158 in insurance coverage.

Simple arithmetic:

$100 billion in new insurance coverage to the poor … less $158 billion in lost coverage due to higher deductibles … equals $58 billion less in aggregate health insurance coverage.

More people with health insurance … but less total health insurance.

I must be missing something since nobody is talking about it.

What’s up?



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