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CSU Research: The ACA Has Significantly Increased Health Insurance Coverage

20 million additional people had health coverage two years after the Act’s passage

As the debate over the potential repeal of the Affordable Care Act intensifies, research by Cleveland State University highlights the significant impact the ACA has had in increasing health coverage nationally. The study, produced by Mark Salling, senior fellow with CSU’s Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs, indicates that over 20 million more people had health insurance coverage in 2015 compared with 2013, the year of the ACA’s passage. This represented a 34 percent decrease in the number of uninsured Americans. In addition, the number of uninsured children decreased from 7.1 percent to 4.8 percent.

“One of the major goals of the ACA was increasing insurance coverage and it included a number of specific provisions designed to address this issue, including the creation of insurance exchanges and the expansion of Medicaid,” Salling says. “The data clearly shows that the Act has been extremely successful in accomplishing this goal.”

Salling also analyzed the impact of the ACA on the state of Ohio and the Cleveland region. The data shows that over a half million more people had health insurance coverage in the state by 2015 while 77,000 more individuals had coverage in the Cleveland and Akron MSAs.

“As lawmakers consider repealing the Act they need to ensure that what would replace it retains the obvious positive aspects of the legislation to insure that insurance coverage figures continue to move in the right direction,” Salling adds.

For a full review of the data as well as geographic maps highlighting the areas with the most increases, visit