Percentage Of Americans Without Health Coverage Drops For 2nd Year

Sep 18, 2013 – The small decline was credited mainly to somewhat higher enrollments in Medicare and Medicaid, as well as the Children’s Health Insurance Program.

The New York Times: Percentage of Americans Lacking Health Coverage Falls Again
For the second year in a row, the proportion of Americans without health insurance declined in 2012, even though real household income and the poverty rate were not significantly different from their 2011 levels, the Census Bureau reported on Tuesday (Pear, 9/17).

Los Angeles Times: U.S. Poverty Rate Holds Steady Near A Generational High
The bureau’s annual report on income, poverty and health insurance suggests that the economic wounds from the Great Recession are patched up but the economy still is struggling to return to full health. In one respect, the data released Tuesday could be seen as positive because things seemed to stabilize after the devastating recession. For the first time in five years, household income did not decrease and the poverty level did not increase last year, officials said. And there was further improvement in the healthcare coverage of Americans, an important indicator of economic security (Lee, 9/17).

The Washington Post: Household Income, Poverty Rate Are Flat For First Time Since Recession, Census Shows
If there was one bright spot in the census statistics, it was that about 400,000 more children had health insurance last year than in the previous year. Caroline Fichtenberg, director of research for the Children’s Defense Fund, said that was largely because of the success of the Children’s Health Insurance Program, which provides health coverage to children from families with incomes too high to qualify for Medicaid coverage. The census report said 3 million more people had health insurance in 2012, with the increase coming mostly from people with government health insurance, particularly Medicare. Eight in 10 Americans have health coverage, and more than half get it under employer-provided plans (Morello, 9/17).

Politico: Share Of U.S. Uninsured Falls, Census Data Show
The percentage of Americans without health insurance dipped slightly from 15.7 percent to 15.4 percent, mainly due to somewhat higher enrollments in Medicare and Medicaid, according to 2011-12 U.S. Census Bureau numbers released Tuesday. The rate of private health insurance held steady for the second year in a row after steadily eroding over the past decade (Norman, 9/18).

Kaiser Health News: 48 Million Americans Remain Uninsured, Census Bureau Reports
The rate of uninsured Americans dropped slightly for the second consecutive year in 2012, from 15.7 percent to 15.4 percent, largely a result of more people enrolling in Medicare and Medicaid, the U.S. Census Bureau reported Tuesday.The closely-watched report found that about 48 million Americans were uninsured in 2012, down from 48.6 million in 2011, a change the agency said is not statistically significant. The report is the last look at the uninsured before the major coverage expansions of President Barack Obama’s health law take effect in January (Galewitz, 9/17).

Stateline: Drop In Uninsured, Growth In Medicaid
On the eve of the federal health law’s launch date, a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau shows a small decline in the number of people who lack health insurance and an increase in the number insured by public programs, including Medicaid and Medicare. Overall, the percentage of people without health insurance declined to 15.4 percent in 2012 from 15.7 percent the year before, while the total number of uninsured people fell to 48 million from 48.6 million in 2011 (Vestal, 9/17).

This is part of Kaiser Health News’ Daily Report – a summary of health policy coverage from more than 300 news organizations. The full summary of the day’s news can be found here and you can sign up for e-mail subscriptions to the Daily Report here. In addition, our staff of reporters and correspondents file original stories each day, which you can find on our home page.


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