by Elizabeth Hayes
Staff Reporter- Portland Business Journal
Dec 23, 2014
One of the big health care success stories this year was the improvement in the rate of Oregonians with health insurance — rising from 86 percent last year to 95 percent today.
The leap was achieved largely through the expansion of Medicaid, or the Oregon Health Plan, to those earning 138 percent of the federal poverty line. The Affordable Care Act's "individual mandate" no doubt also played a role.
Even so, there remain nearly 202,000 people without insurance. That's more than the populations of Hillsboro and Beaverton combined.
Exactly who are they?
"It's a combination of primarily two things," said Ross Lampert, a fulltime organizer with Health Care for All - Oregon, which is pushing for universal health care. "It's people opting out and people who are not qualified for whatever reason — they're undocumented or they haven't been in the country long enough."