Upstate NY’s Uninsured Rate Remains at Historic Low; NYS Rate Is the Lowest Ever Recorded

For Immediate Release: Sept. 13, 2018

Contact: Peter Kates (716) 857-4485

BUFFALO, NY - Upstate New York’s health insurance uninsured rate continued to hold at the historic level of 4 percent, while the state’s uninsured rate hit its lowest level in history, according to a Univera Healthcare analysis of the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2017 American Community Survey issued today.

The 4 percent rate for upstate NY compares favorably to a statewide uninsured rate of 5.7 percent. The national rate is 8.7 percent. 

“More people than ever before are reporting they have coverage that provides them with access to the high-quality health care available in upstate New York,” said Christopher Booth, chief executive officer of Univera Healthcare’s Rochester-based parent company. “We’ve never seen these percentages of the population with coverage.”

The American Community Survey is the largest and the U.S. Census Bureau’s recommended source for examining uninsured data at national, state and regional levels. It reports the yearly uninsured rate for geographic areas with populations of 65,000 or more. The county-level data were aggregated to calculate the upstate uninsured rate cited by the health plan.

“We believe the historically low uninsured rates for upstate are a result of lower-cost health care in this market of nonprofit health plans and nonprofit hospital systems,” Booth said.

By comparison, the 2016 uninsured rate for the state was 6.1 percent, while the U.S. rate was 8.6 percent.

View a Univera Healthcare infographic illustrating the census numbers here

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Univera Healthcare is a nonprofit health plan that is part of a family of companies financing and delivering health services for about 1.5 million upstate New Yorkers. Based in Buffalo, the health plan serves members across the eight counties that comprise Western New York.