News Release

Nearly Half of Those Likely Eligible for DACA are Uninsured

Yesterday, the Biden Administration announced a plan to expand eligibility for Medicaid and ACA Marketplace health coverage to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients. A KFF analysis finds 47% of individuals likely eligible for DACA are uninsured compared to 10% of U.S. born individuals in their age group.

The analysis estimates that among those likely eligible for DACA:

  • 84% are in a family with at least one full-time worker,
  • 54% of adults work full-time,
  • 43% have incomes below 200% of the federal poverty level.

DACA recipients are more likely to be in low-wage jobs without employer-sponsored health insurance. For those without employer coverage or the ability to afford individual market coverage, they are currently prohibited from enrolling in Medicaid, CHIP and ACA Marketplace coverage. A few states do provide state-funded health coverage regardless of immigration status.

The Biden Administration is planning to take administrative action to provide health coverage. However, the future of the DACA program is uncertain pending federal court decisions.

The updated brief provides an overview of the DACA program and its roughly 580,000 active recipients at the end of 2022.

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The independent source for health policy research, polling, and news, KFF is a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco, California.