Report: Rate Of Native American Uninsured Fell Under Obamacare

Arizona Public Media

By: Vanessa Barchfield

Uninsured rates for Native Americans have declined significantly in Arizona and the country as a whole since the passage of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, according to a report from Georgetown University.

In 2008, before Medicaid was expanded under Obamacare, 33 percent of Native American children in Arizona were uninsured. That dropped to 19 percent.

“Now, that’s still too high, but it’s certainly a very strong improvement,” said Joan Alker, executive director of Georgetown’s Center for Children and Families.

For adult Native Americans, the uninsured rate fell from 42 percent in 2008 to 29 percent in 2015.

Alker said those rates, too, remain high.

“And they will likely rise if substantial cuts are made to the Medicaid program.”

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