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article imageIn the wrong direction? Rise of the uninsured

By Tim Sandle     Oct 11, 2018 in Business
In the U.S. the proportion of the population who are uninsured is growing. At the end of 2016 the rate was 10.9 percent; by the end of 2017 this was up to 12.2 percent. New research reveals the state-by-state patterns.
The research comes from the personal-finance website WalletHub and it looks at the rates of the uninsured across each U.S. state and for major cities (some 547 cities in total are reviewed). Additional data is provided based on age, ethnicity and income. The research assessed the post-Affordable Care Act situation under the Trump administration.
Starting with states, the states with the lowest uninsured rates (and, conversely, the highest levels of people with insurance) are (top ten):
1. Massachusetts (2.80%)
2. Hawaii (3.85%)
3. Minnesota (4.39%)
4. Vermont (4.55%)
5. Rhode Island (4.62%)
6. Iowa (4.71%)
7. Michigan (5.17%)
8. Kentucky (5.38%)
9. Wisconsin (5.41%)
10. Delaware (5.41%)
In contrast the ten states with the highest levels of non-insurance are:
41. North Carolina (10.68%)
42. South Carolina (10.99%)
43. Nevada (11.23%)
44. Mississippi (12.04%)
45. Wyoming (12.25%)
46. Florida (12.94%)
47. Georgia (13.43%)
48. Alaska (13.66%)
49. Oklahoma (14.16%)
50. Texas (17.30%)
The research shows Massachusetts with the lowest levels of uninsured persons and Texas with the highest.
In terms of cities, the city with the lowest uninsured rate is Union City, CA (at less than 1 percent), followed by Newton, MA and Fremont, CA. In contrast, the cities with the highest rates of the uninsured are in Texas, with the ‘bottom’ three being: Laredo, TX, Brownsville, TX and Mission, TX. In the case of Mission, the uninsured rate is 32.3 percent.
Cutting across political divides, states that tend to vote Republican tend to have higher numbers of the uninsured compared to states that trend to vote Democrat (31.2 percent compared with 17 percent). Overall the figures point a trend towards fewer people taking out medical insurance. Further analysis of the data followed up by interviews will needed in order to decipher the reasons, whether these be related to cost, confusion over the system, or some other factor.
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