Coverage Opportunities and Obstacles for Hispanics Under the ACA

Source: Michelle M. Doty and David Blumenthal, Commonwealth Fund blog, February 13, 2014

The Hispanic community—a group whose vote is highly valued by both political parties—stands to benefit significantly from the Affordable Care Act (ACA). At least a third of all Hispanics under the age of 65, or 15.3 million people, lack health insurance. According to RAND estimates, 5.4 million of these individuals will gain coverage by 2016 because of the ACA.

Even more uninsured Hispanics could gain coverage, but the numbers depend on whether states act to expand Medicaid and whether Hispanics take advantage of new state and federal insurance marketplaces. So far, 26 states and the District of Columbia have decided to expand eligibility for Medicaid, including two states with large Hispanic populations, New York and California. Yet, Florida and Texas, home to an estimated 14 million Hispanic residents, are among those states that haven’t expanded Medicaid. ….