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New Medicaid Beneficiaries Have Improved Access to Care and Are Satisfied with Their Coverage

Following the Marketplace’s second open enrollment period, the Commonwealth Fund’s Affordable Care Act’s Tracking Survey interviewed a nationally representative sample of adults, including adults with Medicaid coverage or those who might be eligible for it. The survey took place between March 9 and May 3, 2015. The survey found:

  • Coverage expansions are ending long spells of uninsurance for many people: 64 percent of those who gained Medicaid coverage had been uninsured one year or longer.
  • When people obtain health coverage, their access to care improves. About 68 percent of adults who enrolled in a qualified health plan through the Marketplace or in Medicaid got care from a doctor or hospital or filled a prescription. Nearly three-quarters (73 percent) of the people who were previously uninsured and had obtained care said they would not have been able to get this care prior to gaining insurance.
  • While there has been considerable concern that newly enrolled individuals might have trouble finding doctors or being able to make appointments, a large majority of survey respondents (77 percent), including new Medicaid beneficiaries, said they found providers with relative ease, and 60 percent said they were able to get an appointment within one to two weeks.
  • Nine in ten Medicaid enrollees say they are satisfied with their coverage and the providers available to them.
About half of adults with new coverage said they were better off now

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