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Thursday, February 6, 2014

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Kaiser Begins New Survey Series to Provide Data On The Impact Of the Affordable Care Act on the Low and Moderate Income Populations

First Survey Provides Baseline and Data to Inform Early Implementation of ACA Coverage Expansions

The Kaiser Family Foundation has launched a new series of comprehensive surveys of the low- and moderate-income population to help provide solid data on the impact of the Affordable Care Act’s coverage expansions on the affordability of health insurance, access to care and family finances. The first survey in the series, fielded prior to the start of open enrollment, draws upon the experiences of more than 8,700 nonelderly adults and provides a baseline against which future surveys may measure changes in people’s lives that are brought about by the ACA, which took full effect Jan. 1. These will complement the many other polls, surveys and studies the Foundation is undertaking amid the rollout of the ACA.

The baseline survey report, titled “The Uninsured at the Starting Line,” also provides information that can help inform ACA implementation currently underway. Among the issues probed in the survey are the degree to which being uninsured prior to the ACA was a chronic problem or a temporary one, the challenges the uninsured typically have faced in signing up for coverage in the past, the factors they consider in trying to choose a health plan, their financial circumstances and whether their health needs and past lack of access to care portend pent-up demand for health services. Such detailed information about the uninsured, their circumstances and their past patterns in trying to navigate the health care system can help inform the design of targeted outreach and enrollment campaigns, shape efforts to help people maintain their coverage and contribute to a better understanding of the kind of impact increased health coverage may have for families and in communities.

Forthcoming reports keying off the baseline survey will focus on targeted issues such as differences between states expanding their Medicaid programs and those not expanding; in-depth analysis of issues involving the affordability of health care and family finances; Medicaid’s role in facilitating access to care; and the challenges facing part-time workers, among others. Some reports will provide data for specific states, including California, Missouri, and Texas. Kaiser plans to conduct the first comprehensive follow-up survey at the end of the year.  For more information about the findings and how the survey was done, go to the full report online.

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The Kaiser Family Foundation, a leader in health policy analysis, health journalism and communication, is dedicated to filling the need for trusted, independent information on the major health issues facing our nation and its people. The Foundation is a non-profit private operating foundation, based in Menlo Park, California.


Chris Lee | (202) 347-5270 |

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