CHILDREN’S HEALTH: ONE IN THREE LACK INSURANCE
One in three U.S. children lacked health insurance for atThis is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.
least one month in 1995 and 1996, according to a new Families USA
report released today. According to the study, "One Out Of
Three: Kids Without Insurance, 1995-1996," an estimated 23
million children went without coverage for at least one month
during the two-year period. The study, based on U.S. Census
Bureau data, found that the vast majority of uninsured children
live in working families; in nine out of ten cases, the head of
the household worked all or part of the two-year period.
Families USA Executive Director Ron Pollack said, "One third of
our nation's children without health coverage is an uninsurance
epidemic. Since these children are seven times more likely to be
uninsured for a long period rather than a brief interlude, this
epidemic must be taken seriously" (Families USA release, 3/27).
STATE OUTLOOK: According to the report, states in the South
and West had the highest percentage of uninsured children. The
10 states with the highest percentage of uninsured children were:
Texas (46%), New Mexico (43%), Louisiana (43%), Arkansas (42%),
Mississippi (41%), the District of Columbia (39%), Alabama (38%),
Arizona (38%), Nevada (37%), and California (37%). The states
with the greatest number of uninsured children were: California
(3.4 million), Texas (2.6 million), New York (1.5 million),
Florida (1.3 million), Illinois (972,000), Pennsylvania
(867,000), Ohio (773,000), Michigan (670,000), Georgia (664,000)
and New Jersey (553,000). Minnesota had the lowest proportion of
uninsured children (22%), followed by Wisconsin (23%), New
Hampshire (24%), Hawaii (24%), Massachusetts (24%), Vermont
(25%), Washington (25%), Alaska (25%), Ohio (25%), Utah (25%).
CHARACTERISTICS: The report found that almost half of the
uninsured children (47%) lacked coverage for 12 months or more.
Fifteen percent of uninsured children, or one in seven, lacked
coverage for the full two-year period. Twenty-two percent of
uninsured children, one of five, had a parent who was covered by
an employer-provided health insurance plan. Nearly one in three
(34%) of uninsured children lived in families with incomes of
$28,800 or more. The study also found 55% of uninsured children
were non-hispanic whites, 22% were hispanics and 19% were black
("One Out of Three: Kids Without Health Insurance 1995-1996,"