TEXAS – A new study out of the Georgetown University Health Policy Institute says the number of uninsured children in the U.S. is growing and that one-third of these increases come from Texas.
What You Need To Know
- Research looked at insurance coverage between 2016 and 2019
- Found number of insured children is decreasing nationwide
- Says it's possible more kids are without coverage in 2020
The report found that the number of kids without health insurance increased about 726,000 between 2016 and 2019, leaving more than 4 million children without insurance.
The number of kids without insurance fell to an all-time low in 2016 of 4.7 percent after the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in 2014, but those numbers have been rising ever since according to the report. By 2019, that number was back up to 5.7 percent.
“Several factors have contributed to the erosion in children’s health coverage: efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act and cut Medicaid; cuts to enrollment outreach and advertising; inadequate oversight over state Medicaid programs that have created more red tape barriers; and the creation of a climate of fear and confusion for immigrant families that discourages them from enrolling eligible children in Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP),” said Georgetown University researchers regarding the report’s results.
Of those 726,000 uninsured children, an estimated 243,000 live in Texas, which saw the greatest increases. Florida saw the second largest increase with 55,000 children without insurance.
The report says only one state saw a decrease: New York.
“For decades, children’s health coverage had been a national success story, but the data show that during the years of the Trump Administration the trend went in the wrong direction,” said Georgetown University Center for Children and Families Executive Director Joan Alker in a written statement. “What’s worse, the numbers of children losing coverage accelerated from 2018 to 2019 during a time when unemployment was very low. The situation is likely worse today.”
Since the data stops in 2019, the report states it’s likely the number of uninsured children has increased further because of pandemic related job losses.