How Many People Across America Are at Risk of Losing Their Health Insurance?


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Between 2010 and 2015, more than 19 million people in the United States gained health insurance, mostly through key provisions under the Affordable Care Act, according to an analysis by the Urban Institute.

Many of the newly insured were not poor enough to qualify for Medicaid but too poor to buy their own coverage. Others were shut out because of pre-existing conditions.

These groups and others make up the millions that the Congressional Budget Office says could lose their coverage under the Republican plans to repeal and possibly replace the Affordable Care Act.

“All of the elements that enabled more people to get insurance under Obamacare — protections for pre-existing conditions, the expansion of Medicaid and subsidies to make insurance more affordable — are potentially at risk under the various options the Senate is debating,” said Larry Levitt, a policy expert at the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Under six Republican proposals that the Congressional Budget Office had analyzed, the number of uninsured in America would increase by 22 million to 32 million people in 10 years — essentially erasing much of the gains made under the Affordable Care Act. A C.B.O. analysis released Wednesday night showed that a “skinny” repeal measurebeing floated by lawmakers would increase the number by 16 million in 10 years.

“It’s a dramatic understatement to say there’s uncertainty about where this debate will end up,” Mr. Levitt said.

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