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article imageSurvey of uninsured health rates in U.S.: Provider opportunities?

By Tim Sandle     Oct 8, 2017 in Business
U.S. society is polarized on many issues in relation to income and opportunity. One area that exemplifies this is healthcare insurance rates. A new survey provides data relating to cities and states, demonstrating the disparity of cover.
A new survey from financial analysts WalletHub has looked at U.S. health insurance rates. This is in the context of the U.S. privatized health system structure. The survey shows that the U.S. national uninsured rate is improving a little, from an all-time low of 8.6 percent, recorded in the first quarter of 2016. However, when data is examined on a state-by-state basis, 2017 figures show a relatively wide disparity.
The data, compiled by WalletHub in the report “Uninsured Rates by City and by State”, was drawn from 547 U.S. cities and the 50 states. The source data was drawn from the U.S. Census Bureau.
In general terms, the key points from the survey show the following ten states with the highest rates of non-insurance:
Louisiana (10.26 percent)
North Carolina (10.43 percent)
Nevada (11.37 percent)
Wyoming (11.55 percent)
Mississippi (11.84 percent)
Florida (12.54 percent)
Georgia (12.94 percent)
Oklahoma (13.77 percent)
Alaska (14.01 percent)
Texas (16.60 percent)
In contrast to these levels, the states with the lowest rates of insurance are topped by Massachusetts (at just 2.5 percent); followed by Hawaii (3.5 percent) and Vermont (3.7 percent).
In terms of cities, the top cites for insurance rates are Elk Grove, CA (1.6 percent); Folsom, CA (1.6 percent); and Fremont, CA (1.7 percent). In contrast, the city with the lowest insurance rate is Brownsville, Texas (29 percent); followed by Mission, Texas (27 percent) and Laredo, also in Texas (27 percent). There is an association with the data in terms of income levels and social class.
Aside from the social problems that the data highlights, this information will be of interest to healthcare insurance companies and to those seeking to offer support services. One potential reason, outside of unaffordability, is that in some areas there is a lack of competition which causes insurance premiums to rise. Should startup health insurance companies, running lower cost models based on digital technology enter into some of the local markets, this could present healthcare insurance to some of the population at a lower rate.
More about Uninsured, Insurance, insurtech
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