California Above U.S. Average for Uninsured Kids, Report Finds
California dropped one spot to No. 19 in the annual Kids Count report released Wednesday that compares the well-being of children in each state based on several factors, including health care coverage, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
The report, released by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, found that in 2004:
- 15% of the 8.3 million uninsured U.S. children lived in California; and
- 13% of the state's children were uninsured, above the national average of 11%.
The findings are based on the most recent data available and are compared with data from 2000. The report also rates states on education, mortality rate and teen birth rate.
Corey Newhouse, a senior policy associate for advocacy group Children Now, said even a minor drop in the rankings is significant for California because the state has more than 9.7 million children.
Ted Lempert, president of Children Now, said, "We're headed the wrong direction, and it's especially disconcerting on some of the health indicators where California traditionally has seemed to be a leader."
A Department of Social Services spokesperson declined to comment because the report has not yet been reviewed (Franko, San Francisco Chronicle, 7/25).