About 11% Of Children Lack Health Insurance

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About 11% of U.S. children lack health insurance, according to the 18th annual "Kids Count" report released on Wednesday by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, the San Francisco Chroniclereports. The report measured the progress of each state since 2000 in10 areas -- infant mortality rates, teenage birth and mortality rates,child mortality rates, rates of low-birthweight infants, and childpoverty rates -- based on Census Bureau data from 2004 or 2005, themost recent information available (Franko, San Francisco Chronicle, 7/25). In addition, the report ranked states in each area, as well as overall (AP/Winston-Salem Journal, 7/25).

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Thereport found that Minnesota, New Hampshire and Connecticut ranked thehighest overall and that Alabama, Louisiana and Mississippi ranked thelowest (Smith, Richmond Times-Dispatch,7/25). According to the report, the national infant mortality ratedecreased to 6.8 per 1,000 live births in 2004 from 6.9 per 1,000 in2000 (Fitzpatrick, Providence Journal,7/25). The report also found that the national birth rate among teensages 15 to 19 decreased to 41 per 1,000 in 2004 from 48 per 1,000 in2000 and that the mortality rate among teens ages 15 to 19 decreased to66 per 100,000 in 2004 from 67 per 100,000 in 2000 (Crawford, Arizona Republic, 7/25).

Elizabeth Hudgins, senior director of policy research at Action for Children North Carolina,said that states "need to think creatively about strategies to makesure children get what they need," adding that the report "reallyprovides some guidance in moving forward" (AP/Winston-Salem Journal, 7/25).
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Reprinted with permission fromkaisernetwork.org.You can view the entire KaiserDaily Health Policy Report, search the archives, andsign up for email delivery at kaisernetwork.org/email. The Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report is published forkaisernetwork.org,a free service of The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.

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