Stride Study: Health Coverage in the Gig Economy

The Affordable Care Act has made it easier to get health insurance for Americans without a traditional job, yet health coverage remains one of the largest costs of working independently. While traditional, full-time W-2 workers often have access to employer-sponsored health insurance, independents must find, purchase, and manage their own coverage.

As the independent workforce grows, more Americans will rely on individual health coverage under the Affordable Care Act. We’re at a unique inflection point where better utilization of the ACA will not only deliver care to a population that needs it most but will also make working independently more sustainable for millions of Americans. 

Stride Health has served gig workers for the past three Open Enrollments with finding health insurance, navigating subsidy qualification, and fully utilizing health plans. In the lead up to this year’s Open Enrollment, Stride shares new insights into how the Affordable Care Act is impacting this segment of the workforce.

Key Findings:

Gig workers are uninsured at three times the rate of average Americans: 35% of those surveyed were uninsured while only 10.5% of all Americans remained uninsured.

The majority of workers plan to get coverage: 55% of workers who are currently uninsured plan to shop for a new plan or get coverage from another source

Gig workers are leaving a lot on the table: when it comes to subsidy opportunity, most are going uninsured due to price (63%) even though there is government help available. They need better tools to help them figure out their financial outlook.

Gig workers need specific guidance when it comes to subsidies: due to irregular income, gig workers struggle with subsidy qualification, they also still need help claiming appropriate tax deductions to increase subsidy eligibility — 85% of workers didn’t claim any tax deduction when applying for health plans.

ACA is working in terms of ability to choose every year: 38% of workers will shop for new plans this year.

Read the full study:

Laura ZulligerComment