Uninsured and Children on Medicaid

HEHS-95-83R: Published: Feb 14, 1995. Publicly Released: Feb 14, 1995.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided demographic information on medically insured and uninsured children. GAO noted that: (1) in 1989, 8.7 million children lacked health insurance as compared to 9.3 million in 1993; (2) between 1989 and 1993, the percentage of children with employment-based insurance declined from 63.2 to 57.6 percent; (3) while the percentage of uninsured parents increased 14 percent between 1989 and 1993, the percentage of uninsured children remained stable; (4) uninsured children were more likely to be from poor or near poor families than insured children; (5) most uninsured children had at least one employed parent; (6) the decline in children's employment-based insurance was offset by a 54-percent increase in Medicaid coverage for uninsured children; (7) the increase in Medicaid coverage was partially due to extending Medicaid to more low-income children during the period, but at least one-fourth of the income-eligible uninsured children were not enrolled in Medicaid; and (8) in 1993, the percentage of children on Medicaid with a working parent increased, while the percentage of children receiving other assistance decreased.

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