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The Affordable Care Act's third open enrollment period will end on Jan. 31, but the latest Kaiser Health Tracking Poll finds that only a small share of people without health insurance realize it.
President Barack Obama receives the vaccine on 20 December 2009; Wikimedia Commons
Just 7 percent of the uninsured correctly identify January as the deadline to enroll; another 20 percent say the deadline is at the end of 2015, while everyone else either says they don’t know, gives another date or says the deadline has already passed.
People without health insurance remain a key outreach target for the government, outreach groups, and insurers, and the poll finds one in five (20%) report that over the past six months they have personally been contacted by someone about signing up for coverage.
The majority (65%) of the uninsured think they are personally required to have health insurance, though about a quarter (27%) say they don't think the requirement applies to them personally. (Some, in fact, may be exempt under specific provisions of the law.)
When asked why they have not personally purchased health insurance this year, nearly half of the uninsured (46%) say they have tried to get coverage but that it was too expensive. Relatively few cite other reasons, including 9 percent who say they'd rather pay a fine than pay for insurance.
Most of the uninsured (55%) say they plan to get health insurance in the next few months. Some may in fact be in the midst of a brief period without insurance; however, a majority (55%) say that they have been uninsured for at least two years.
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