14% of Uninsured Kids Eligible for Public Insurance Live in California
Nearly 37% of all U.S. children who are eligible for public health insurance programs but who remain uninsured live in California, Florida and Texas, according to a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation report, UPI reports (UPI, 9/18).
Details of Report
The report -- which was conducted by Urban Institute researchers -- found that the national rate of children who were eligible for public health insurance and enrolled in such programs increased by 5.5 percentage points from 2008 to 2011, reaching 87%.
Researchers credited the increase to:
- State and federal efforts to increase awareness of such programs; and
- Increased enrollment assistance for parents (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation release, 9/18).
In California, researchers found that 87% of children eligible for Healthy Families were enrolled in the program. Healthy Families is California's Children's Health Insurance Program.
However, the state accounts for 14.3% of children in the U.S. who are eligible for public health coverage but who remain uninsured. The only state accounting for a larger percentage of such children is Texas, which accounts for 14.8% (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation report, September 2013).
The authors said that additional enrollment efforts targeting populations in California, Florida and Texas could "profoundly reduce the percentage of children nationwide who are uninsured" (UPI, 9/18).
Reaction From CMS
In a CMS Blog post discussing the findings, Cindy Mann -- the agency's deputy administrator and director of CHIP Services and the Center for Medicaid -- said "there is still more to be done" to enroll children in public health insurance programs.
She also said that Affordable Care Act provisions will increase health coverage among adults, and in turn, their children."[W]e know that when eligible parents enroll, they are also likely to enroll their children and take advantage of the preventive services that help them stay healthy," she said (Mann, CMS Blog, 9/18). This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.