This article explores the American Community Survey (ACS) and its emerging role as a data source of health insurance coverage to researchers and policy-makers. Over the past 10 years, the U.S. Census Bureau developed the ACS to inform health services research of official government estimates of the uninsured previously gathered each decade by the Current Population Survey (CPS). The article gathers that the ACS will lead to a better understanding of insurance coverage changes over time.
Some of the ACS’ strengths include:
The drawbacks to the ACS are the strong points of the CPS. The 30-year history of the CPS confirms trends over time. Additionally, the CPS better details the health insurance measurement, validating the information gathered as accurate.