The US Census Bureau has just released a new infographic explain the demographics of the uninsured in America. The infographic does include commentary which reveals that 19 to 34 year-olds are the most uninsured single group in America as of 2012. Essentially this single group amounts to 40% of the entire uninsured population under the age of 65 years old.
It has been known throughout the healthcare industry that this specific age group typically doesn’t carry insurance because of critical life transitions that occur during this period. Traditionally, the age group includes student currently attending college, just finishing their undergraduate studies and are moving away from home, and/or are in a transitional period where other priorities take up a limited income in their twenties and early thirties.
The commentary also lists reasons such as part-time work, and entry-level jobs as contributing to the relatively high numbers of uninsured in this age group by preventing access to healthcare through employers. Finally, it lists lack of access to public health programs such as Medicaid as contributing factors to this segment’s lack of health coverage.
Since the implementation of the Affordable Healthcare Act policy which allows 19-25 year-olds to stay on their parent’s health plan, a significant shift has been seen in this age group with a decrease in the uninsured numbers of about 5% or roughly half a million in this segment. However, since the new policy did not cover 26-34 year-olds there has been no significant shift in that group’s level of coverage.
Of all the metropolitan areas analyzed by the Census, Boston-Cambridge-Quincy in Massachusetts had the lowest number of uninsured 19-34 year olds in the country (about 7.9%), and Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach in Florida as having the largest percentage of uninsured (41%) relative to their own populations.
Additionally, the infographic shows that higher concentrations of the uninsured 19-34 year-old segment are in Florida, and the southwest of the country.