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Is Health Insurance Affordable for the Uninsured?

  • M. Kate Bundorf
  • Mark V. Pauly
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    In this paper, we investigate the meaning of affordability' in the context of health insurance. Assessing the relationship between the affordability of coverage and the large number of uninsured in the U.S. is important for understanding the barriers to purchasing coverage for the uninsured and evaluating the role of policy in reducing this number. We propose several definitions of affordability and examine the implications of alternative definitions on estimates of the proportion of currently uninsured who are unable to afford coverage. We find that, depending on the definition, health insurance was affordable to between one-quarter and three-quarters of the uninsured in 2000.

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    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w9281.pdf
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    Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 9281.

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    Date of creation: Oct 2002
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    Publication status: published as Bundorf, M. Kate and Mark V. Pauly. "Is Health Insurance Affordable for the Uninsured?" Journal of Health Economics 25, 4 (July 2006): 650-673 .
    Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:9281
    Note: HC
    Contact details of provider: Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
    Phone: 617-868-3900
    Web page: http://www.nber.org
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