Gallup: Despite Obamacare, 11.9% Still Uninsured

By Brittany M. Hughes | April 13, 2015 | 12:15pm EDT

(AP Photo/Don Ryan)

( – Nearly 12 percent of American adults still do not have health insurance, according to a Gallup poll published Monday.

This is despite the fact that the individual mandate in President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act (ACA), AKA Obamacare, took effect at the beginning of 2014.

According to Gallup 11.9% of American adults were uninsured in the first quarter of 2015. That was down one percentage point from the previous quarter and 5.2 points since the end of 2013, just before the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate went into effect.

The Gallup survey shows the ACA falling far short of the president’s statement that the law would be "about making sure that all of us, and all our fellow citizens, can count on the security of health care."

In a speech in the Rose Garden on April 1, 2014, six months after the federal government initiated its rollout of its health insurance marketplace, Obama told the American people, “Today should remind us that the goal we set for ourselves, that no American should go without the health care that they need; that no family should be bankrupt because somebody in that family gets sick, because no parent should have to be worried about whether they can afford treatment because they’re worried that they don’t want to have to burden their children; the idea that everybody in this country can get decent health care--that goal is achievable.”

“That’s what the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, is all about: making sure that all of us, and all our fellow citizens, can count on the security of health care when we get sick, that the work and dignity of every person is acknowledged and affirmed,” Obama said.

The percentage of Americans without health insurance is the lowest it has been since Gallup first began conducting the poll in 2008, Gallup noted. But that still leaves 11.9 percent uninsured.

According to Galllup, “the uninsured rate has dropped sharply since the most significant change to the U.S. healthcare system in the Affordable Care Act -- the provision requiring most Americans to carry health insurance -- took effect at the beginning of 2014,” when the government began forcing people to buy health insurance or else pay a fine.

The number of uninsured has dropped significantly from the third quarter of 2013, when the rate of uninsured Americans peaked at 18 percent.

For the poll, Gallup interviewed 43,575 adults between Jan. 2 and March 31 of 2015 as part of the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index. The margin of error was +/-1 percent with a 95 percent confidence level.

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