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Uninsured People on the Rise – Survey said Working Adults don’t have Health Insurance 

April 26th, 2006

Uninsured People on the Rise – Survey said Working Adults don’t have Health Insurance 

Cover The Uninsured Organization

More people are going without health insurance compared to previous years.  A survey conducted by The Commonwealth Fund has a report called, Gaps in Health Insurance: An All-American Problem, said that more uninsured adults are skipping preventive medical treatment and end up in the Emergency Room or Hospital.

The statistics reported in this survey are realistic to what is going on in the United States with health insurance and medical bills.  The cost of health insurance have skyrocketed in the past few years and companies are paying less of the share and trimming back benefits to fend of the extra expense with health insurance.

 

Two out of five working adult Americans that have a yearly income ranging from $20,000 - $40,000 are uninsured.  That is 41% in this income bracket.  Compared to 2001, the amount of uninsured for this same income bracket was 28% uninsured.  This has been a rapid increase of the amount of people that are uninsured.

The majority of uninsured people remained with the lower income adults.  There is an estimated 48 million working-age American adults that have been uninsured at some time during this year.  Of these uninsured 67% of these were in families that had at least one person working full-time.

"The jump in uninsured among those with modest incomes is alarming, particularly at a time when our economy has been improving," said Commonwealth Fund President and study co-author Karen Davis. "If we don't act soon to expand coverage to the uninsured, the health of the U.S. population, the productivity of our workforce, and our economy are at risk."

 

Not only is there expensive cost of health insurance, but also there is an increase in people with medical bills that they cannot pay for at one time.  More adults are struggling with medical debt.  There is roughly one out of five adult (21%) that said they are paying off medical debt off over time.  There is one-third (34%) who had experienced medical bill problems.  These people were unable to pay off the bills at one time and have been on a payment schedule to repay the debt.  This medical debt is not just affecting the uninsured, it also is happening to the insured as well.  Roughly 62% of the adults that have medical debt had insurance when the medical bills happened.

Without insurance the uninsured people were more likely to skip going to the doctor and not take prescription medication.  There were an estimated 59 percent of people that had a chronic illness such as diabetes or asthma that skipped medication because they could not afford it and they were uninsured.

 

The uninsured people were more likely to go to the emergency room or hospital because they avoided preventative treatments.  There was approximately 35% of the uninsured with a chronic condition who went to the ER or stayed in the hospital overnight or did both.  Comparably, the insured showed approximately 16% of these people went to the ER or hospital if the suffered from a chronic condition.

Preventive screenings were not as good with the uninsured.  Only 18% of the uninsured adults age 50 – 64 had a colon cancer screening in the past five years, compared to 56% of the insured who got the screening.

"These findings paint a disturbing picture of the day-to-day impact of being uninsured on the physical as well as financial health of millions of Americans," said Sara Collins, Commonwealth Fund Senior Program Officer, and the study's lead author. "The uninsured are more likely to go without preventive care or screening tests that could prevent more serious and costly health problems. For an uninsured person who is unlucky enough to get sick, it is easy to see how quickly they can fall into a downward spiral of debt, forgone care, and poorer health."

Health insurance is very expensive, but if you consider the cost of care for emergency visits it might be worth having at least some insurance.  Usually insurance will get you a reduced rate on your medical bills, even if the insurance company pays very little of the medical costs.  If a person takes a proactive approach with preventive medicine they will likely avoid costly medical expense in the future.  It is unfortunate that the cost of medical care has escalated to exclude people from affording it.

CoverTheUninsured.org is a website dedicated to a group of people that want to change the United States situation concerning health insurance.  They are planning May 1st - 7th to make Americans more aware of the health insurance crisis.  They will be at Washington D.C. to address the health insurance problem.

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Nicole Wilson
Best Syndication

 Health Insurance
 

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Important:  The material on Best Syndication is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment for any medical conditions. You should promptly seek professional medical care if you have any concern about your health, and you should always consult your physician before starting a fitness program.
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Copyright 2005 Best Syndication                   Last Updated Saturday, July 10, 2010 09:48 PM