Technical Report

Closing the Coverage Gaps: Reducing Health Insurance Disparities in Massachusetts

Massachusetts’ health insurance coverage for its residents has been historically excellent, with the lowest uninsurance rate in the country of 3% in 2019. However, over the previous 12 months, 7.3% of the state’s population experienced a gap in health coverage, with Black, Hispanic, and lower socioeconomic groups experiencing significantly higher rates of uninsurance than the overall state population. As a result, these groups are more likely to face the access barriers and financial insecurity associated with being uninsured.

This report, developed in collaboration with the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation, focuses on closing the coverage gaps in Massachusetts, with a particular emphasis on creating a more racially and ethnically equitable system of coverage. The report describes the people in Massachusetts without health insurance and the barriers to coverage they face, including affordability, complexity, immigration, language, and cultural barriers. It then proposes policy options that address the specific circumstances in the state, including the best approaches to closing the remaining coverage gaps and removing barriers that result in racial and ethnic disparities in health insurance coverage.


Robert W. Seifert, Consultant

Michael Karpman
Dulce Gonzalez
Sharon K. Long
Andrew Green
Clare Wang Pan
Urban Institute

Kristy Helscel
Benjamin Moriarty
Rebecca Elliott
ForHealth Consulting at UMass Chan Medical School

Download the report