Trends in health insurance and type among military veterans: United States, 2000–2016
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Trends in health insurance and type among military veterans: United States, 2000–2016

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  • Alternative Title:
    Am J Public Health
  • Description:
    Objectives To describe long-term national trends in health insurance among veterans in the U.S. from 2000 to 2016, in the context of recent health care reform. Methods Using data (2000–2016) on veterans aged 18 to 64 from the National Health Interview Survey, trends in insurance and uninsurance, by year, income and state Medicaid expansion status were examined. The current proportions (2016) with each type of insurance by age-group were also described. Results The percentage of veterans with private insurance decreased from 70.8% in 2000 to 56.9% in 2011, whereas between 2000 and 2016, VA health care (only) almost tripled, Medicaid (without concurrent TRICARE or private) doubled, and any TRICARE tripled. After 2011, the percentage uninsured decreased. In 2016, low-income veterans in Medicaid expansion states had double the coverage through Medicaid (41.1%), compared with low-income veterans in nonexpansion states (20.1%). Conclusions Estimates presented are nationally representative of noninstitutionalized veterans and show marked increases in military related coverage through TRICARE and VA health care. In 2016, 7.2% of veterans aged 18 to 64 (3.7% of veterans aged 18 and over) remain uninsured.
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