Happy 6th Anniversary to the Affordable Care Act
Alaska Dispatch News
March 22, 2016
In terms of significance, the passage of the Affordable Care Act in 2010 is often compared to the establishment of Medicare and Medicaid in 1965. The ACA grew out of advances in coverage provided by Medicare and Medicaid — and its history reaches back even further, when President Teddy Roosevelt first proposed a national health insurance program in 1912! We celebrate over 100 years of health care progress in 2016.
The ACA turns 6 on March 23 and its elder sibling, Medicare, turns 51 a few months later. Both programs continue to evolve, enhancing the lives and health of Americans.
More states continue to expand Medicaid. Thirty states and Washington, D.C., have expanded Medicaid, and it is under discussion in others.
Since the ACA took effect, 20 million uninsured adults ages 18 to 64 gained health coverage. This figure does not include children or adults ages 65 or older. The uninsured rate has decreased substantially across all races and ethnicities throughout the country.
Here in Alaska, 23,029 people signed up for health insurance through healthcare.gov during the recent open enrollment period. Another 12,678 Alaskans gained coverage through Alaska’s newly expanded Medicaid program.