Uninsured consumers who were sicker and older than average led the rush to “get covered” this year — and many got covered through plans purchased outside the new public exchange system.
Analysts at Gallup are reporting that finding in a summary of results from a telephone survey of 31,000 U.S. adults conducted from April 15 through June 17.
See also: Uninsured rate remains at record low.
About 5 percent of the participants said they lacked health coverage last year and have coverage this year.
About 2.8 percent of all participants — and 56 percent of the newly insured participants — said they got covered through the new Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) public health insurance exchange system.
The other 2.2 percent — or 44 percent of the newly insured people — said they got covered by buying off-exchange plans.
PPACA created the exchange system to help people shop for coverage on an apples-to-apples basis and use a new tax credit premium subsidy system. But PPACA also requires insurers selling individual major medical coverage outside the exchange system to sell the coverage without taking personal health status into account. The only personal health information insurers can use when pricing individual coverage is age and tobacco use.