More children lack health insurance

A record 4.4. million children were without health insurance last year, an increase by about 320,000, an analysis of Census data shows.

Why it matters: After decades of decline, it’s the third year in a row the nation has seen an increase in the number of uninsured children.

  • The numbers were recorded during steady economic growth — before the coronavirus and record unemployment.

The big picture: The number of uninsured children began to increase in 2017 as Medicaid and CHIP enrollment began to decline, the analysis from the Georgetown Center for Children and Families shows.

By the numbers: Twenty-nine states experienced growing uninsured rates among children from 2016-2019, with Texas accounting for more than one-third of uninsured children during this time period.

  • New York was the only state that had a significant improvement in uninsured children from 2016-2019.

What to watch: About 300,000 more children may be uninsured by the end of 2020 due to the pandemic, the Urban Institute estimates, meaning the rate of uninsured children will have increased every year under the Trump administration.

The bottom line: Children with health insurance have been proven to have better long-term health, fewer trips to the hospital and ER and better social outcomes like education and income.

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