2017 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium
Section 6: Health Insurance Coverage
This section presents statistics on health insurance coverage in the United States, especially the health insurance coverage of people with disabilities. It presents statistics concerning Medicaid and Medicare, the government-run health care programs in the United States. Specifically, the data address the percentage of people with and without disabilities who have some sort of health insurance coverage as well as the difference in percent health insurance coverage between people with and without disabilities (health insurance coverage gap). The data also address the number of people with disabilities served under Medicaid and Medicare and the amount spent under each program on people with disabilities. This section also presents the type of health insurance coverage possessed by people with disabilities. The principal source of these data is the U.S. Census Bureau, specifically the American Community Survey. Statistics for people with disabilities (disability status) are based on having responded ‘yes’ to a series of questions within the American Community Survey (see the glossary for more details). People receiving disability benefits from Social Security usually automatically qualify for Medicaid and Medicare, however some states have more restrictive eligibility criteria. The principal source of the Medicaid and Medicare data is the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ 2013 Medicare and Medicaid Statistical Supplement, produced by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Table 6.1: In 2016, 90.2 percent of individuals with disabilities ages 18 to 64 years living in the community had health insurance coverage. In contrast, 87.7 percent of individuals without disabilities ages 18 to 64 years living in the community had health insurance coverage—a health insurance coverage gap between those with and without disabilities of 2.3 percentage points. In other words, as a whole, 2.3 percent more individuals with disabilities had health insurance than individuals without disabilities. The health insurance gap ranges from 8.9 percentage points in Florida to -8.3 percentage points in Nebraska.
Table 6.2: In 2016, 45.9 percent of individuals with disabilities ages 18 to 64 years living in the community had private health insurance and 55.9 percent had public health insurance (some had both), while 9.8 percent of individuals with disabilities ages 18 to 64 years living in the community did not have health insurance. The state with the smallest percentage of people with disabilities without health insurance coverage was Massachusetts (3.0). The state with the largest percentage of people with disabilities without health insurance coverage was Oklahoma (19.6).