August 28, 2008

Uninsured Americans on the Decline....well, sorta

According to a report released by the U.S. Census Bureau on August 26, 2008, the number of Americans with health insurance declined in 2007....but in order for this statistic to be ENTIRELY factual, you'll have to "ignore the man behind the curtain."

The Census Bureau's report states that, after climbing steadily for six years, the number of Americans without health insurance dropped by more than a million in 2007, to 45.7 million. What's the catch? Health care experts say that the drop was the result of growth in government-sponsored health insurance programs (like Medicare and Medicaid) AND, at the same time, the number of people covered by private health insurance continued to decline. Over all, the percentage of people covered by government programs increased to to 27.8 percent in 2007 from 27 percent in 2006, and private health insurance fell from covering 67.9 percent in 2006 to 67.5 percent in 2007. Additionally, employment-based coverage also continued its decline dropping to 59.3 percent from 59.7 percent.

So, yes, technically, there was a SLIGHT decline in the number of uninsured Americans. This also means: one-million uninsured Americans down, just 45.7 million more uninsured Americans to go......

To read the 8-27-08 NYT article:
A Decline in Uninsured Is Reported for 2007

To read the Census Bureau's press release (includes a PDF link for the report Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2007):
http://www.census.gov/Press-Release/www/releases/archives/income_wealth/012528.html