Poll analysis indicates Kentucky has the largest percentage of people who have gained health coverage under Obamacare

Kentucky has the nation’s highest percentage of formerly uninsured people who have gained coverage under federal health reform, according to an alternative interpretation of the latest national polling data from The Gallup Organization.

Gallup again ranked Kentucky second to Arkansas in the expansion of insurance, but those rankings are based on percentage-point declines. However, the more illustrative ranking may be the percentage of formerly uninsured who are now covered.

That can be calculated, roughly, by dividing the percentage-point decline by the original percentage of uninsured. That shows Kentucky ranking first, with 52 percent of the formerly uninsured now having coverage, either with private insurance or the federal-state Medicaid program. Connecticut ranks second at 51.2 percent and Arkansas third at 49.3 percent.

The state Cabinet for Health and Family Services recently issued a press release about Kentucky staying at second in the Gallup rankings. Told about the alternative calculation, cabinet spokeswoman Jill Midkiff wrote, “While we certainly do not dispute Gallup’s findings, it is accurate to say that Arkansas’s decrease in the uninsurance rate has been larger. However, Kentucky has seen the highest percentage of formerly uninsured who have become insured.” Gallup did not respond to a request for comment.

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