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Health Insurance

Health insurance is a major determinant of access to health care. Since the passage of the Affordable Care Act, 20 million Americans gained health insurance and the nation’s uninsured rate fell below 10%. Those who have served have health insurance options not available to the general population. These include TRICARE for those currently serving or who have retired from military service and U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) health benefits for those who have served and were discharged other than dishonorably. Still, more than 1.5 million veterans remain uninsured. Veterans who lack insurance are often unable to afford medical care and are less likely to make routine visits to a doctor.


  • Overall rates of health insurance are significantly higher for those who have served.
  • Since 2011 to 2012, overall rates of health insurance have increased.
  • Rates of health insurance are generally higher for minorities—especially Hispanics—who have served than not served.
  • Adults aged 18 to 39 years and those with annual incomes below $25,000 are less likely to have insurance. However, those who have served in these groups have significantly higher rates of health insurance than those who have not served.

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