Healthcare News & Insights

CDC report: Surprising info on who’s really uninsured

The commonly held view that most of the uninsured are living in poverty doesn’t jibe with the latest research from the Centers for Disease Control.

Among the report’s findings: For the 12-month period that ended in March 2010, 59.1 million people had no health insurance for at least part of the year. That’s an increase of about 400,000 people from the prior year.

About half of the increase was among adults with family incomes two to three times higher than the federal poverty level. (The current poverty rate is about $22,000 for a family of four.) For many of those who are newly uninsured, it’s because they no longer have access to private insurance. Private insurance coverage has dropped by about 9% over the past 10 years. Public insurance programs cover many of those families’ children — but the adults frequently lose all coverage.

Not surprisingly, adults who didn’t have insurance were more likely to forgo care. Last year, 40% of uninsured adults with a chronic health condition such as asthma, diabetes or high blood pressure skipped treatment.

For more information, visit the CDC site.

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