Under the 2010 Affordable Care Act, millions of Americans gained health coverage in 2014. Coverage is key to accessing affordable, high-quality care, but consumers who struggle to understand how health insurance works and how to estimate out-of-pocket costs are at risk of going without needed care even if they are covered. This brief outlines identifies what health insurance aspects pose the greatest problems for consumers, which groups need more assistance to enroll and use benefits, and what topics and skills consumer-counseling efforts should focus on.
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Health insurance coverage is key to accessing affordable, high-quality care. But do most Americans have the knowledge and skill they need to navigate or get the most out of their insurance plans? To answer this question, AIR researchers developed The Health Insurance Literacy Measure©, which consists of 21 self-report questions assessing self-confidence and behaviors associated with choosing and using health insurance.