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Fact Sheet - Coverage

Fact Sheet - Coverage

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Published by: nchc-scribd on Nov 10, 2009
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10/15/2013

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Health Care Facts:
Health Insurance Coverage

Most Americans have health insurance through their employers, yet employment is no longer a guarantee of
health insurance coverage. As America continues to move from a manufacturing-based economy to a
service economy, and employee

Health I nsurance Coverage of Workers, by
Firm Size, 2007
47%
52%
68%
76%
78%
78%
87%
5%6%
6%
6%
4%
27%
32%
21%
16%
13%
13%
6%
2%
3%
4%
4%
8%
20%
5%
8%
6%
0%
10%
20%
30%
40%
50%
60%
70%
80%
90%
100%
Self-
Employed
< 25 Workers
25-99
Workers
100-499
Workers
500-999
Workers
1000 or More
Workers
Public Sect or
Employer
Individual
Medicaid/ Other Public
Uninsured

Source: Chart taken from Kaiser Family Foundation at www.kff.org:
Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured and Urban Institute
analysis of the 2008 ASEC Supplement to the Current Population Survey.

working patterns continue to
evolve, health insurance coverage
has become less stable. The
service sector offers less access to
health insurance than its
manufacturing counterparts.

Due to rising health insurance
premiums, many small employers
cannot afford to offer health
benefits. Companies that do offer
health insurance, often require
employees to contribute a larger
share toward their coverage. As a
result, an increasing number of
Americans have opted not to take
advantage of job-based health
insurance because they cannot
afford it.

HOW MANY AMERICANS ARE UNINSURED?
\u2022

Several studies estimate the number of uninsured Americans. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, nearly 47 million Americans, or 20 percent of the population under the age of 65, were without health insurance in 2008, their latest data available.1

\u2022

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, using the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS)
estimated that the percentage of uninsured Americans under age 65 represented 27 percent of the
population. According to the MEPS data, nearly 54 million Americans under the age of 65 were uninsured
in the first-half of 2007.2

\u2022

A recent study shows that based on the effects of the recession alone (not job loss), it is projected that
nearly seven (7) million Americans will lose their health insurance coverage between 2008 and 2010.3
Urban Institute researchers estimate that if unemployment reaches 10 percent, another six (6) million
Americans will lose their health insurance coverage. Taking these numbers together, it is conceivable that
by next year, 57 to 60 million Americans will be uninsured.

\u2022
The Urban Institute estimates that under a worse case scenario, 66 million Americans will be uninsured
by 2019.4
\u2022
Nearly 90 million people \u2013 about one-third of the population below the age of 65 spent a portion of either
2007 or 2008 without health coverage.5
National Coalition on Health Care
September 2009
WHO ARE THE UNINSURED?
\u2022
The large majority of the uninsured (85 percent) are native or naturalized citizens.6
\u2022
Nearly 1.1 million part-time workers lost their health insurance in 2008.1
\u2022
Over 8 in 10 uninsured people come from working families \u2013 almost 70 percent from families with one or7
\u2022
The percentage and the number of uninsured Hispanics was 31 percent and nearly 15 million in 2008.1
WHY IS THE NUMBER OF UNINSURED PEOPLE INCREASING?
\u2022

Even if employees are offered coverage on the job, they can\u2019t always afford their portion of the premium. Health insurance premiums have increased 131 percent for employers since 1999 and employee spending for health insurance coverage (employee\u2019s share of family coverage) has increased 128 percent between 1999 and 2008.7

\u2022

Rapidly rising health insurance premiums are the main reason cited by all small firms for not offering
coverage. Health insurance premiums are rising at extraordinary rates. The average annual increase in
inflation has been 2.5 percent while health insurance premiums for small firms have escalated an average of
12 percent annually.7

HOW DOES BEING UNINSURED HARM INDIVIDUALS AND FAMILIES?
\u2022

Studies estimate that the number of excess deaths among uninsured adults age 25-64 is in the range of
22,000 a year. This mortality figure is more than the number of deaths from diabetes (17,500) within the
same age group.8

\u2022

Lack of insurance compromises the health of the uninsured because they receive less preventive care, they are diagnosed at more advanced disease stages, and once diagnosed, tend to receive less therapeutic care and have higher mortality rates than insured individuals.9

\u2022
Controlling for age, race, sex, and income, uninsured cancer patients are 1.6 times more likely than insured
patients to die within five years of diagnosis.1 0
\u2022
The high cost of health care can damage the overall economic well-being of families. One in three low-
income parents without coverage report medical bills have a major financial impact on their families.11
\u2022
On average, the uninsured are 9 to 10 times more likely to forgo medical care because of cost and twice as
likely to have medical debt.9
\u2022

The uninsured are increasingly paying \u201cup front\u201d -- before services will be rendered. When they are unable to
pay the full medical bill in cash at the time of service, they can be turned away except in life-threatening
circumstances.12

\u2022

Access to an emergency room for uninsured patients does not qualify as access to coordinated care. While
physicians are required to stabilize patients in an emergency, they are not required to treat the condition
comprehensively.1 3

\u2022
Over the last decade, disparities between the uninsured and insured widened in access to a usual source of
care, annual check-ups, and preventive care, and are the greatest in disparities and our growing.6
This fact sheet was research and prepared by Joel Miller and Julie Bromberg.
National Coalition on Health Care
September 2009

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