Changes in Health Insurance Coverage and Health Status

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Economic growth in the mid-1990s brought improvements in job quality and increased rates of employer-sponsored health insurance coverage, gains that were quickly reversed as the economy slipped into a succeeding recession. State implementation of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP), combined with many states’ decisions to expand Medicaid eligibility, offset declines in employer-sponsored insurance for both children and adults. The increase in public coverage among children was large enough to significantly increase the overall share of children with health insurance.

The analysis presented here uses data from the 1997 and 2002 rounds of the National Survey of America’s Families (NSAF) to examine changes in health insurance coverage and respondent-reported health status by race and ethnicity. The NSAF collects information on more than 40,000 households and, when weighted, is nationally representative of the civilian, noninstitutionalized population under age 65. Data from the survey reflect a period of sharp economic fluctuations and changes in health policy. Shifts in insurance coverage associated with these factors were most dramatic among children and adults in low-income families. The NSAF captures detailed information on the economic, health, and social characteristics of this group by oversam-pling families with incomes below 200% of the federal poverty thresholds. cialis professional

To analyze change among racial and ethnic groups, we classified children and adults into five categories: “Hispanic” includes all races, while “black” and “white” include non-Hispanics only. Data for non-Hispanic Asian/Pacific Islanders and American Indian/Alaska Natives are not shown separately but are included in estimates for all races and ethnicities. Children are identified as age 17 and younger and adults are of age 18 to 64. Families are considered low-income if they have incomes below 200% of the federal poverty thresholds, while higher-income families have incomes of 200% or higher.

All differences between groups and changes over time discussed here are significant at the 0.05 level, except where noted otherwise. Note that estimates for 1997 use new weights based on the 2000 Census and may differ from previously published estimates that used weights based on the 1990 Census. canadian pharmacy viagra

Category: Health

Tags: health insurance, health status, racial/ethnic disparities

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