Uninsured Gaining More Attention Nationwide
For "the first time in more than a decade, the debate over how to provide health care for the uninsured is moving back to center stage in Washington and many state capitals," USA Today reports. Lawmakers, business leaders and unions, among other groups, are coming together "in calling for health system change," according to USA Today.
To highlight why some U.S. residents cannot or do not purchase health coverage, USA Today profiles six uninsured people and families.
Reasons for not purchasing coverage include the cost of insurance for people with special needs; the cost of additional insurance for dependents; lack of work benefits; self-employment; the cost of coverage for individuals; and the belief that insurance coverage is unnecessary (Appleby , USA Today, 3/15).
USA Today on Thursday also examined looked at Medicaid and how, "despite its wide reach, the program is not an all-encompassing safety net." Eligibility for Medicaid varies by state and depends on income, family size, employment status and whether an applicant is disabled or elderly.
Alan Weil, executive director of the National Academy for State Health Policy, said, "We do not have a safety net of health insurance coverage in this country," adding, "Where you live, your family structure and the nature of your illness determines what it is you're going to get" (Appleby , USA Today, 3/15).