On the 11th Anniversary of the Affordable Care Act, 9 Million Young Adults Covered and Growing
Today marks the 11th anniversary of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which was signed into law on March 23, 2010. The ACA significantly changed the health care system in the United States by reducing the uninsured rate and reforming insurance practices that strengthened consumer protections. The ACA stands as a pillar of economic and health security for the American people, alongside Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.
In response Erin Hemlin, Health Policy and Advocacy Director for Young Invincibles issued the following statement:
“Eleven years ago today the Affordable Care Act was signed into law, ushering in sweeping health insurance reforms and greatly expanding health coverage to millions of Americans. Under the ACA, more than 9 million previously uninsured young Americans have gained affordable, comprehensive health insurance coverage, lowering the uninsured rate from 30 percent in 2010 to just 15 percent before the pandemic.
Now, in the face of the COVID pandemic, the ACA has been a lifeline, minimizing health coverage losses through it’s individual marketplace and Medicaid expansion. Just in the last few weeks, enrollment has been surging thanks to President Biden’s new special enrollment period and commitment to undoing the damage to the health law from the previous administration.
In addition to the tremendous gains in coverage, reduction in disparities, and stronger consumer protections created over the last 11 years, we are thrilled that President Biden and Congress have prioritized building off of the ACA through the American Rescue Plan (ARP). The ARP will help the Affordable Care Act live up to its name – greatly improving affordability for millions of Americans who purchase coverage through the individual market. But there is still more work to be done.
As we move into the second decade of the ACA, it is more important than ever to double down and strengthen what’s working. There is now real momentum to restore key programs that have been defunded and deregulated, such as the Navigator program, which is crucial to ensuring everyone has the consumer assistance they need to access coverage, as well as enhancing subsidies for young adults – helping young workers better afford their coverage, while simultaneously strengthening the risk pool. Today, we reflect on 11 years of progress, and look forward to continuing the fight until we reach universal coverage for all.”