by Christopher Lilienthal, Third and State, 9/11/12
The U.S. Census Bureau will release new data Wednesday on poverty, income and health insurance rates for 2011 based on its annual Current Population Survey (CPS). The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities has analysis of what we can expect to see in that report.
First, as the Center’s Matt Broaddus explains, the health care data are likely to bring some good news and some bad news:
The good news: preliminary data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) indicate that in 2011, the total number of uninsured Americans fell for the first time in four years. Less promising: private health coverage among adults from 26 to 64 years old continued to fall, marking the fourth consecutive yearly decline in the coverage rate for this group, though major provisions of health reform scheduled for implementation in 2014 are designed to reverse this erosion of private coverage.
One reason for the overall improvement in the health insurance rate can be found in a key provision of the Affordable Care Act, as Broaddus explains:
Among adults aged 19 through 25, 56.2 percent had private insurance coverage in 2011 — 5.2 percentage points more than in 2010. A provision in health reform that allows adult children to obtain coverage through their parents’ health insurance plans up to their 26th birthday is likely the overwhelming reason why.
The news is not so good with regard to poverty. As the Center’s Arloc Sherman writes, the poverty rate likely rose in 2011 in no small part because of a decline in unemployment insurance (UI) payments and large public-sector layoffs, much as Pennsylvania saw last year in schools and local governments. Citing preliminary Census data, Sherman writes….
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