Minnesota’s Uninsured Rate Drops To 4.5 Percent
Minnesota achieved the fifth-lowest uninsured rate in the country last year with just 4.5 percent of the state’s population—245,000 residents—having no public or private health insurance benefits for the entire calendar year.
That’s according to the annual report on health insurance coverage in the U.S. released by the U.S. Census Bureau this week.
Ranking better than Minnesota was Massachusetts at 2.8 percent, the District of Columbia at 3.8 percent, Vermont at 3.8 percent and Hawaii at 4.0 percent.
It’s the second consecutive year that Minnesota’s uninsured rate has fallen, according to government figures. In 2014, 5.9 percent, or 317,000, state residents were uninsured. In 2013, those numbers were 8.2 percent and 440,000, respectively.
The downward trend in the uninsured rate in Minnesota is tracking with the trend nationally. According to the Census Bureau, the national uninsured rate dropped to 9.1 percent last year from 10.4 percent in 2014 and 13.3 percent in 2013.
The trend reflects the impact of the health insurance mandates contained in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The health reform law requires employers to offer health coverage to workers and requires individuals to have health insurance benefits.
The percentage of the U.S. population with private health insurance benefits obtained through their employer, purchased directly or secured from another source rose to 67.2 percent last year from 64.1 percent in 2013. Over that same two-year period, the percentage of the population with public health insurance benefits obtained from Medicare, Medicaid or military health plan climbed to 37.1 percent from 34.6 percent, according to Census Bureau figures.