Facts & Figures

Health insurance in Minnesota:

Health insurance affects health status

Health insurance helps ensure access to health care. People without health insurance are less likely to seek medical care for routine conditions or injuries or receive preventative care.

Disparities in health insurance continue in Minnesota

The following groups of Minnesotans are less likely to have health insurance:

  • those with lower incomes
  • non-white race/ethnicity
  • young adults (18-34 years)
  • residents of Minneapolis and St. Paul. 

Disparities in health insurance coverage affect the health status of these groups. More uninsured people report poor health and have fewer healthy days than the overall population of Minnesota.

Health insurance in Minnesota

For people aged 0-64. Source: Minnesota Health Access Survey.

The proportion of people without health insurance in Minnesota has significantly increased since 2001. However, there was a small decrease from 2011 to 2013 and, although it was not a significant decrease, it's a trend in the right direction. Most recently, about 9% of Minnesotans under the age of 65 were uninsured. The proportion of people covered by group insurance has declined since 2001 while the proportion of people covered by public insurance has increased. In Minnesota, the two state-based public health insurance programs are Medical Assistance (MA) and MinnesotaCare, in addition to other public programs like Medicare. The proportion of Minnesotans obtaining individual insurance is expected to increase, due to the Affordable Care Act provisions that took effect in January 2014.

There are regional differences in insurance coverage

People living in Minneapolis or St. Paul are much more likely to be uninsured compared to the statewide average; most recently, about 14% of people in Minneapolis or St. Paul were without health insurance. The 7-county metro, excluding Minneapolis and St. Paul, has a much lower proportion of people without health insurance; most recently, about 7% were uninsured. The proportion of people uninsured in the South East and West Central regions was also significantly lower than the statewide average. The proportion of people without health insurance in Greater Minnesota (the area outside the 7-county metro area) was almost identical to the statewide average.

For county-level data on health insurance coverage, visit the Population Characteristics Data Query.

Health insurance in Minnesota by region

Region Percent without Health Insurance
Minnesota 9.4%
Northwest 11.4%
Northeast 9.9%
West Central 4.0%
Central 8.8%
Southwest 12.9%
South Central 13.6%
Southeast 6.8%
Metropolitan Area 7.3%
Minneapolis-St. Paul 13.7%
This map is available for download. Percentages are for people aged 0-64 years in 2013. The "Metro" region in this map excludes the cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul. Source: Minnesota Health Access Survey. For a map of Minnesota counties within each region, see: SCHSAC Regions in Minnesota.

There are large racial/ethnic disparities in insurance coverage

People in the following race/ethnicity categories were the most likely to be without health insurance in 2013: Hispanic (35% uninsured), American Indian (27% uninsured), or non-Hispanic black (14% uninsured). Non-Hispanic white people had lower uninsurance than the statewide average.

Uninsured people in Minnesota, by race/ethnicity

Data are for people aged 0-64 in 2013. Source: Minnesota Health Access Survey.

Young adults are most likely to be uninsured

Most adults 65 and older are covered by Medicare or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). In Minnesota, typically less than 1% of this age group lacks health insurance. Young adults between 18-34 years have the highest proportion of people without health insurance, especially 26-34 year old men (22% uninsured) and 18-25 year olds from either sex (15% uninsured).

Uninsured people in Minnesota, by age

Data are for people of all ages in 2013. Source: Minnesota Health Access Survey.

There are fewer young adults without health insurance since the Affordable Care Act was implemented

The Affordable Care Act, signed into law in March 2010, requires health plans and insurers to make coverage available to dependents until the age of 26, with some exceptions. Accordingly, the proportion of adults aged 18-25 without health insurance declined between 2009 and 2011, especially among males. This is typically an age group with one of the highest proportions of uninsurance, so it's a trend in the right direction. The proportion of 18-25 year olds without health insurance fell dramatically between 2009 and 2013.

Males are more likely than females to be uninsured

The proportion of males without health insurance has increased since 2001, to 11% in 2013. Children generally have better health insurance coverage than the statewide average in Minnesota; about 6% of children aged 0-17 years were without health insurance in 2013, a number that has stayed relatively stable in Minnesota for the past 10 or more years.

Uninsured people in Minnesota, by sex

Data are for males and females aged 0-64 years, and children under 18. Source: Minnesota Health Access Survey.

To see data & measures for other Population Characteristics, see: