Who are the Non-Elderly Uninsured?

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Who are the Non-Elderly Uninsured?[i]

Although the number and percentage of uninsured dropped in 2007, there continues to be marked economic and social disparity within the non-elderly uninsured population.
  • A majority of the uninsured are members of families with a family head who works during the year (almost 83 percent). Only 17.4 percent of the uninsured are members of the families where the family head did not work at any point during the year.
  • Those with low incomes represent a disproportionate share of the uninsured. Nearly one-third (32.5 percent) of the uninsured in 2007 live in families with incomes below $20,000. More than 35 percent of individuals in families making less than $10,000 were uninsured as compared with 6.6 percent of individuals in families with annual incomes of $75,000 or more.
  • Uninsurance varies considerably by industry. Those employed in blue-collar jobs such as agriculture, forestry, fishing, mining, and construction industries constitute a significant share of the uninsured (36.5 percent).
  • In 2007, minority groups were more likely to be uninsured than whites. While 12.7 percent of whites were uninsured in 2007, 33.5 percent of Hispanics, 20.9 percent of African Americans, and 17.7 percent of other ethinicities (primarily Asians) were uninsured.
  • Country of birth also impacts insurance coverage with 33.2 percent of foreign-born individuals being uninsured as opposed to only 12.7 percent of native-born individuals.[i]
  • Young adults continue to have the highest uninsured rates; those aged 18-24 and 25-34 have uninsured rates at 28.1 percent and 25.7 percent, respectively.[ii]


Figure: The Nonelderly Uninsured As a Share of the Population and by Pverty Levels, 2007

[i] DeNavas-Walt, C. et al. Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2007, U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Reports, Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 2008, pp.60-235.
[ii] Ibid

[i] Unless otherwise noted all data taken from Fronstin, P. “Sources of Health Insurance and Characteristics of the Uninsured: Analysis of the March 2008 Current Population Survey,” Employee Benefit Research Institute, September 2008. www.ebri.org/pdf/briefspdf/EBRI_IB_09a-2008.pdf.