The number of Americans without health insurance coverage increased to 50.7 million in 2009, from 46.3 million in 2008. The percentage of uninsured increased as well to 16.7 percent, from 15.4 percent over the same period.
These statistics were included in the Census Bureau's just-released report on Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage: 2009.
Other highlights include:
- "The number of people with health insurance decreased from 255.1 million in 2008 to 253.6 million in 2009. Since 1987, the first year that comparable health insurance data were collected, this is the first year that the number of people with health insurance has decreased.
- Between 2008 and 2009, the number of people covered by private health insurance decreased from 201.0 million to 194.5 million, while the number covered by government health insurance climbed from 87.4 million to 93.2 million. The number covered by employment-based health insurance declined from 176.3 million to 169.7 million. The number with Medicaid coverage increased from 42.6 million to 47.8 million.
- Comparable health insurance data were first collected in 1987. The percentage of people covered by private insurance (63.9 percent) is the lowest since that year, as is the percentage of people covered by employment-based insurance (55.8 percent). In contrast, the percentage of people covered by government health insurance programs (30.6 percent) is the highest since 1987, as is the percentage covered by Medicaid (15.7 percent).
- In 2009, 10.0 percent (7.5 million) of children under 18 were without health insurance. Neither estimate is significantly different from the corresponding 2008 estimate.
- The uninsured rate for children in poverty (15.1 percent) was greater than the rate for all children.
- In 2009, the uninsured rates decreased as household income increased: from 26.6 percent for those in households with annual incomes less than $25,000 to 9.1 percent in households with incomes of $75,000 or more.
- The proportion of the foreign-born population without health insurance in 2009 was nearly two-and-a-half times that of the native-born population."