Report: Without Reform, Thousands of Uninsured People Could Die Early
A failure to pass national health care reform legislation could lead to the premature deaths of 34,600 uninsured Californians between the ages of 25 and 64 over the next decade, according to a new Families USA study, the Modesto Bee reports (Carlson, Modesto Bee, 2/27).
Researchers ranked California as the state with the largest number of projected premature deaths during the next 10 years.
A previous Institute of Medicine study found that 18,000 U.S. residents died prematurely because of a lack of health insurance coverage in 2000. In 2006, the Urban Institute updated that figure to 22,000.
Using the same methodology as the earlier reports, Families USA estimated that more than 275,000 uninsured adults nationwide will die prematurely over the next 10 years because they are uninsured.
The study also found that 68 U.S. adults younger than age 65 die each day because of a lack of coverage. It estimates that the number will increase to 84 by 2019 unless the country enacts significant health policy changes.In addition, researchers found that a lack of health insurance has contributed to 290,000 premature deaths nationwide since the last time lawmakers pushed for national health care reform in the mid-1990s (Andrews, "Prescriptions," New York Times, 2/26). During that time, a lack of coverage contributed to 38,400 premature deaths in California, according to Families USAÂ (Modesto Bee, 2/27). 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.