The numbers aren't too pretty. Underinsured adults -- those with health insurance all year and very high medical expenses relative to their incomes, rose by 80% between 2003-2010, from 16 million to 29 million. Nearly half of U.S. adults, 81 million people, were either underinsured or uninsured in 2010, up from 75 million in 2007 and 61 million in 2003.

The staggering stats come from the study, Affordable Care Act Reforms Could Reduce the Number of Underinsured U.S. Adults by 70 Percent, authored by staff of The Commonwealth Fund, and published in Health Affairs.

The study makes clear that merely having insurance is not enough. Having the right amount and type of coverage matters more. "Underinsured families are at nearly as high risk as the uninsured because, while they have health insurance, holes or limits in their plans expose them to often unaffordable medical costs," says Mary Mahon, assistant vice president of public information at The Commonwealth Fund.

Other Study Highlights
Low-income families were most at risk of being underinsured. Three-quarters (77%) of those with incomes below 133 percent of the poverty level and more than half (58%) of those with incomes between 133 percent and 250 percent of the poverty level were either underinsured or uninsured.

The risk of being underinsured is rising up the income scale. In 2010, 16 percent of adults with incomes between $40,000 and $60,000 were underinsured and another 19 percent were uninsured. In 2003, only 5 percent of adults with incomes in this range were underinsured.

Rates of forgone care (e.g., not filling a prescription or not following up on recommended tests or treatment) were twice as high among the underinsured and three times as high among the uninsured as rates reported by adults with more adequate insurance.
How would you describe your health insurance coverage?
Great, have excellent insurance through my job.162 (24.0%)
I have an individual plan, but it's expensive.162 (24.0%)
I have coverage, but it's not enough.129 (19.1%)
I have no coverage.201 (29.7%)
22 (3.3%)
The good news, says Mahon, is that the study finds that in addition to covering the uninsured, Affordable Care Act (ACA) reforms will also provide significant relief for those who are underinsured, potentially reducing their numbers by as much as 70% once the law is fully implemented. Affordable Care Act reforms like premium assistance and reduced cost-sharing for lower and modest income families will provide significant support to those most likely to be underinsured-people with incomes below 250% of the federal poverty level, or $56,000 a year for a family of four, says Mahon. Seven out of 10 of the underinsured, and a similar share of those uninsured during the year, had incomes this low in the study.

However, she cautions, "To reduce the number of underinsured, it will be critical for the plans offered under the Affordable Care Act reforms to keep deductibles and out-of-pocket costs low for essential, effective health care."



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Elsa

While I was looking for a cheap health insurance my friend told me that there are sites, where people can compare prices from many providers.These sites are the only one way to save money on your insurance, because once you register many companies will make you different offers.The site he suggested me was:

---NationalHealthInsurance.info---

I tried them and I saved more than 30%.Try it.Just register and get free quotes!

January 12 2012 at 4:00 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
gmydogbud

When American Citizens, are out of work, are unable to keep a roof over their heads, feed, cloth and educate their children, what makes anybody think that they are able to afford insurance, of any kind? This is all due to Federal Government Policies and those of Big Business! Thanks to all those in government who allowed American Jobs to go Off Shore, Voting For NAFTA - And On and On! You'll take note, that Not One Politician Is Saying That THEY or THEIR FAMLIES Are HURTING! They are all - Living - Very - Well - OFF- Of The American People! They Are Not FORCED, TO - FOLLOW - The SAME - RULES - & - REGULATIONS - THAT - THEY - FORCE - THE - REST - Of - US - TO - FOLLOW ! With Respect: Presidents - OBANA'S - FRIENDS - Jeffery Emill & Warren Buffet's - COMPNIES - PAY - LITTLE - TO - NO - TAXES - While - TELLING - OTHERS - TO - PAY - MORE - Can anybody say - DOUBLE - Or - EVEN - TRIPLE - STANDARD ? JEFFERY EMILLS - COMPANY - G. E - LET - OVER - THIRTY -- THOUSAND - PEOPLE - GO - SINCE 2009 & 2011. WARREN BUFFET'S - COMPANY - IS JUST - NOW - PAYING - TAXES - TO - THE - FEDERAL FROM - 2002 - THTOUGH - 2004. They STILL - OWE - BACK - TAXES - WHILE - THESE - TWO - MEN - SIT - AT - THE ELBOW - OF - OUR - PRESIDENT - No - COLA - FOR - American - Senior - CITIZENS - HOWEVER - THE - MEMBERS - OF THE - CONGRESS - HAVE - GIVEN - THEMSELVES - A - COST - OF - LIVING - INCREASE - OF - THIRTY-SIX - THOUSAND - DOLLARS - PER - YEAR - WHILE - AMERICAN - SENIOR - CITIZENS - WERE - LIED - TO - & - TOLD - THAT - THE - COST - OF - LIVING - DID - NOT - GO - UP!! Our Government Had - NO - PROBLEM - WHAT - SO - EVER - TELLI - SENIOR - CITIZENS - NO - TO - A - COLA - However THEY - HAD - PLENTY - OF MONEY - TO - INCREASE - THEIR - INCOME!!

September 12 2011 at 9:53 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
pinklady

I have had a bare bones Kaiser plan for my son for the past 9 years. Premiums have gone up 300% in that time despite me raising the deductible from $500 to $1000 to $1500 to $2500. I tried to shop around and get a cheaper deal with another company, but no one sells individual plans for children anymore! Due to Obama's legislation, any insurance company that offers individual policies on children is required to cover pre-existing conditions. So they just won't insure children. Disgusting!

September 12 2011 at 9:42 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
mesnapp

When Health plans have low out of pocket, pay for preventative up front 1100%, Office Visit Copays, up front cost are going to be higher simply if the utilization is $2,400 per year then the Insurer has to charge at least $200 per month to break even.

Then we add any risk, you smoke, your are over weight, you have never had Insurance in the last 63 days, you have issues, your rates need to higher due to the associated risk.

I see all the sickies running to the exchange for free and assisted coverage with expected low out of pockets, the rates have to explode or the taxppayer wil be helping pay the cost.

After a few years this will go ovr to the State and then back to the tax payer to help out. Again this will result in something known as an entitlement, health insurance is not a right.

You chosse what to have in life, weather it is health insurance or cable TV or a cell phone?

Thank you employer who normally foots 50% or more of the current plan you might be on, then thank your agent for finding the right plan to help everyone combat the rising cost of care.

Remember the health portion of the game is not as high as the RX portion, so go beat up the RX companies.

Look at MAPD plans, the health plans are free and RX costs more! Go think!

September 12 2011 at 5:42 AM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
2012 Clark 2012

i stopped paying my health insurance 9 months ago. i was paying 128.00 10 yrs ago, 220.00 three years ago and then my insurance went up to 328.00 a month for january. I then stopped paying for it. My deductable was 1500 a year on the 328.00 per month policy for 2011.
It's a ripp off. Anyone can get free healthcare at any hospital. just walk in and they will serve you without insurance.

September 12 2011 at 3:56 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
minimaniac99

Why don't we all get the same health insurance that congress gets? I think that would be the fair thing don't you?

September 11 2011 at 9:14 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
jgoetz9174

I have had health insurance and/or hospitalization insurance all of my working life and retirement. But in the last two years my out of pocket costs have risen by more than $6000.00. Why? My insurance coverage didn't get any better. In fact it actually did get a little worse in that I pay about $6000.00 more for the same coverage I had. The only difference I see is "the affordable health care act." This seems ludricous to me.

September 11 2011 at 7:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
investrman

This is a sad development and it is getting worse. Part of the problem is medical insurance premiums are so high, yet you get barely any care/coverage unless you hit qualifiers annually.... meaning it now forces many to say "do I risk not having medical insurance at all do the the high qualifier cost" or "will our family spend at least $5,000.00-7,000.00 this year out of pocket on medical needs" which is what a lot of policies require before they even pay out on medical bills (if you have the insurance).

Also, if you live in NC for instance, depending on your family income, and if you earn around $40,000.00 for a family of 4 say, you qualify for medicaid today from DSS; so a lot of people are being driven that direction because they are working hard, do not earn what they used to, yet qualify for medicaid through DSS...The thing is, the poverty level numbers for people has risen so much, many who would not qualify for any welfare benefits in past, do today.

Also, UNLESS you are earning $80,000.00 per year, you are NOT middle class any longer, but part of the growing working poor class.

Wages are being reduced or stalling out, stagflation is occuring across the USA, and we are entering a time fortold 30-40 years ago where the USA is slipping backwards toward 3rd world status, while other nations like China, go into 1st world status with all their industrial & manufacturing growth the USA enjoyed after WWII which we no longer have. Executives & CEO's in USA are wealthier than ever, because their bottom lines are stronger, because they do not pay US wages as they always used to, and can get away cheaper overseas or Mexico and not deal with labor protection laws either.

September 11 2011 at 1:51 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
Setanta

so ...........IF LOW INCOME are UNDERINSURED,and LOW INCOME GETS MEDICAID,why all the hosanna_s for this pelosi reid kennedy dodd CLINTON obama health care PLAN ?That's ALL IT IS.....medicaid for ALL. and all the moron suppporters ? ENJOY IT and ENJOY YOUR search for not only your providers BUT SERVICES.

September 11 2011 at 8:31 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
kng20

I run a very small bussines. I have 2 full time and 2 part time working for me. We insure our 2 full time workers with health insurance and that is unusual for such a small company. In the past 5 years we have had to lower the benifits on the policies and both company and employess have had to pay more and more premiums, Premiums have Basically doubled in the last 7 years. Why you ask? MOre and More uninsure folks out there. The overwhelming majority of people are against a National Health insurance. Why? understandably so. But what have we got now? The burden of paying the bill for care (especially emergency care) has been put on the people who carry insurance. Remember there is no such thing as "A FREE LUNCH". Someone somewhere down the line pays for it. The patch work of thousands of Health ins Co. are enough to drive you nuts. Why does a Hospital Emergency Room visit where you might see a Doctor for 3 minutes and a X-ray to see if you got a broken arm can cost upward of 2000 dollars? Its insane. Why? because you are paying for sometimes 2 others that have no insurance. The hospital tries to collect from them. Some even sue the patient for money. Then these folks go broke and end up on welfare. Now you get to pay again thru your taxes to feed and house these people. Unless the root of this whole health care issue is addressed it will just get worse.

September 11 2011 at 7:43 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to kng20's comment
Setanta

yeah,you're paying fr others,HAVE BEEN PAYING FOR OTHERS,paying for fraud,paying for FRAUDS,paying for illegals and their anchors,paying for illegals ABUSING THAT ER refusing to go to clinics WHERE THEY ARE COVERED UNDER FEDERAL LAW etc etc--ANYBODY THINKING THIS government run universal health care for all will be cheaper for those PAYING "THE BILLS" IS A MORON. every single state is screwed and IN DEBT DUE TO MEDICAID ----yeah,i know---obama care will makeit all better.......

September 11 2011 at 8:37 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply