Monday, June 29, 2015

Uninsured rate dropped 66 percent in Sangamon from 2013 to 2015, survey says

The share of Sangamon County adults who lack health insurance has dropped by two-thirds since 2013, according to the 2015 Sangamon County Citizen Survey.

The change appears to be directly tied to the Affordable Care Act's federally funded expansion of Medicaid eligibility and federal subsidies that can reduce the price of health insurance through Illinois' health insurance exchange, said Ashley Kirzinger, director of the Survey Research Office at the University of Illinois Springfield.

The county's uninsured rate dropped from 11.3 percent in 2013 — before the health care law's key provisions took effect in January 2014 — to 3.8 percent this year, meaning about 11,300 more people with insurance. "That's excellent news," said Dr. Jerry Kruse, CEO of SIU HealthCare, the multispecialty practice of doctors at Springfield's Southern Illinois University School of Medicine.

The survey, a scientific measure of community attitudes conducted by telephone with 576 people 18 and older from April 15 to May 18, showed a drop in uninsured rates similar to what has been found nationwide by the Gallup organization.

This story appeared in The State Journal-Register on June 26, 2015.

Read the entire article online.