Study: More Than 25% of Uninsured Kids Have Parents With Coverage
About three million, or 27.9%, of the 8.1 million uninsured U.S. children have at least one parent with health insurance, according to a study published Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association, Bloomberg reports.
For the report, researchers analyzed data collected by HHS's Medical Expenditure Panel Survey from 2002 through 2005 (Marcus, Bloomberg, 10/21).
The study found that the parents with health insurance typically are covered through a private employer-based insurance system, under which it is too costly for them to cover their families (Dunham, Reuters, 10/21).
According to the study, 25% of uninsured children with at least one insured parent are Hispanic, 40% live with a single parent and the majority are in low- and middle-income families (Bloomberg, 10/21).
Lead researcher Jennifer DeVoe of Oregon Health and Science University said, "I think there's been a myth that all uninsured children have uninsured parents, and so if we cover the parents we can cover the kids," adding, "In most cases the parents have insurance through work at reduced rate or no cost, but adding their family is unaffordable" (Reuters, 10/21).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.