The number of Americans without health insurance barely changed in 2017, according to new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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Data: Centers for Disease Control; Chart: Chris Canipe/Axios

The big picture: Despite the Trump administration's best efforts to do away with the Affordable Care Act, people are still maintaining their coverage.

The numbers that matter:

  • Of the nearly 80,000 people the CDC interviewed, 12.8% were uninsured at the time of the interview. That's the same as the uninsured rate in CDC's 2015 survey, and not significantly different from 2016's numbers.
  • The number of people covered by the Affordable Care Act was also largely unchanged.
  • More Hispanic people were uninsured in 2017 than 2016; coverage among the other racial groups remained steady.

But, but, but: A lot of the administration's most significant changes to the ACA weren't in effect in 2017. In fact, a lot of them still aren't in effect.

  • We might not see the full effects of repealing the individual mandate and expanding access to skimpy, short-term insurance plans — the two biggest policy changes since Trump took office — until 2019.
  • A smaller but more current tracking survey from the Commonwealth Fund recently found that the uninsured rate had ticked up early this year.

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Felix Salmon, author of Capital
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