Thursday, September 10, 2009

Uninsured in America

Megan notes that the president has "downgraded" the number of uninsured Americans to 30 million -- most likely because the more commonly used statistic (45 million) includes immigrants, who will not have access to public insurance under the new plan.

Depending on how you look at it, the real number of uninsured is probably even lower than 30 million, since many of the uninsured are either eligible for some kind of public health insurance or wealthy enough to purchase coverage on their own.


MediaMaven said...

I was given these numbers today:

The number of uninsured nationwide rose to 46.3 million in 2008, up 1.3% from 45.7 million the prior year, with 15.4% of the total population uninsured, which was no statistical change over 2007, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

mikhailbakunin said...

Yeah, the "number of uninsured nationwide" includes immigrants (both documented and undocumented) who -- depending on your perspective -- shouldn't really be counted.

Certainly, the president's view is that non-citizens should not have access to federally subsidized care. And, if this is true -- if we're deliberately excluding non-citizens from the system -- then they probably shouldn't be counted among the ranks of the uninsured.

There was no statistical change in the percentage of uninsured between 2007 and 2008 because the population size increased.