Public Assets Institute > Policy Areas > Health Care > Vermont Moves Closer to Health Insurance for All

Vermont Moves Closer to Health Insurance for All

For all of the problems and criticism swirling around the state’s health insurance exchange, Vermont is getting results where it counts. New Census data released today show Vermont tied with the District of Columbia for having the second lowest percentage of residents without health insurance. According to the Census, in 2015 just 3.8 percent of Vermonters were uninsured.

Massachusetts was ranked first, with 2.8 percent with no health care coverage. Alaska was last; 14.9 percent of residents there were uninsured last year.

Starting in the fall of 2013, people in Vermont and across the country began signing up for the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare. Some states, like Vermont, set up their own online exchanges for people to purchase health insurance. Other states opted to let the federal government run the exchanges.

According to the latest Census data, the number of uninsured Vermonters declined by 21,000 from 2013 to 2015. During that period the uninsured rate was cut nearly in half—from 7.2 percent in 2013 to 3.8 percent in 2015. Only six other states made deeper cuts to their rates of uninsured.

Posted by Jack Hoffman on September 13, 2016 at 3:51 pm

2 Responses to “Vermont Moves Closer to Health Insurance for All”

  1. Ann Raynolds, Psy.D says:

    Many do not consider people insured if they have any deductibles or large co-pays which prevent them from seeing primary care doctors, mental health or substance abuse providers when they need care. This is, for many, their situation.

  2. David Kreindler says:

    This statistic, like conventional unemployment statistics, is insufficient to explain the situation that people find themselves in. In the same way that we need to know whether employed workers are making living wages and how many unemployed workers have simply stopped looking for work — before we can understand the relationship between unemployment statistics and the experience of workers — we need more information before we can begin to understand whether the health insurance that people have actually improves their health. What is the effect of deductibles, co-pays and limited “benefits”, for example?

    This statistic suggests that Vermont might doing well, compared to other states, in improving the health of its residents. But comparisons to other states represent a vague and very low bar.