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Defeat Diabetes
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Number of Uninsured U.S. Residents Increases to 47M in 2006

Posted: Friday, September 07, 2007

The number of uninsured U.S. residents rose by 5% and is now up 2.2 million in 2006 to 47 million, up from 44.8 million in 2005, the largest increase in four years, even as poverty fell and household incomes rose, according to data released by the Census Bureau. 
The percentage of people in the U.S. who received health benefits through an employer declined in 2006 to 59.7 percent, from 60.2 percent in 2005, the census report found.
The survey also found that:
  • 58.7% of the uninsured worked either full- or part-time during 2006;
  • Adults ages 18 to 34 comprise the largest portion of the uninsured at 40.4% of those without coverage;
  • 73.2% of the uninsured were U.S. citizens;
  • Of the uninsured, 62% live in households with annual incomes less than $50,000, and of that group, more than half live in households with annual incomes between $25,000 and $50,000;
  • 18.1% of the uninsured lived in households with annual incomes between $50,000 and $74,999 (Armstrong, CQ Today, 8/29);
  •  8.5% of the uninsured in 2006 lived in households with annual incomes greater than $75,000, up from 7.7% in 2005;
  • 19.3% of children in families with annual incomes below the federal poverty level are uninsured (USA Today, 8/29);
  • 11.7% of children lacked health insurance in 2006, up from 10.9% in 2005. The percentage of children who are uninsured has increased two years in a row after five years of decline (Aizenman/Lee, Washington Post, 8/29);
  • Uninsurance rates differed by race, with 34.1%, or 15.3 million, of Hispanics uninsured in 2006.
  • Uninsurance rates for blacks increased from 19% in 2005 to 20.5% in 2006, up from 32.3% in 2005.
  • The rate for whites was statistically unchanged at 10.8% in 2006, while the rate for Asian-Americans dropped from 17.2% in 2005 to 15.5% in 2006;
  • An additional 1.3 million full- or part-time workers were uninsured in 2006, compared with 2005;
  • The uninsurance rate for documented immigrants remained statistically unchanged at 16.4%, while the uninsured rate for undocumented immigrants increased from 43.1% to 45% (USA Today, 8/29);
  • Texas in 2006 had the highest percentage of uninsured residents at 24.1% and Minnesota had the lowest at 8.5%;
  • The percentage of individuals with government-sponsored health care declined from 27.3% in 2005 to 27% in 2006 (Goodnough, New York Times, 8/29); and
  • The number of people with health insurance increased to 249.8 million in 2006, up from 249 million in 2005 (U.S. Census Bureau report highlights, 8/29).

Republicans and Democrats in Washington are struggling for solutions to soaring medical expenses, which have been rising about twice as fast as wages, according to health policy researchers. The number of uninsured has been rising since 2001, while the percentage of U.S. residents without coverage increased in every year except 2004.

Presidential candidates from both parties have offered plans to tackle the growing number of uninsured people. Voters in surveys rank health care as a top domestic concern.

Source: Diabetes In Control

 
 
 
 
 
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