Speed Reads

By the numbers

Number of uninsured Americans increases for the 1st time in a decade

For the first time in a decade, the number of Americans without health insurance went up last year, the U.S. Census Bureau said Tuesday.

The bureau's annual report found that 27.5 million people, 8.5 percent of the American population, did not have health insurance in 2018, an increase of 1.9 million. The number of uninsured children and adults ages 35-64 also rose, The Associated Press reports. Under the Affordable Care Act, people were fined if they did not sign up for health insurance, but this fine was zeroed out under the Republican's 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which went into effect this year. The ACA covers about 20 million people.

The report also revealed that household income rose in 2018 at its slowest pace in four years, and the poverty rate dropped for the fourth year in a row to 11.8 percent.