The number of Americans without health insurance to its highest level in more than a decade in the first half of 2009, according to a new survey from the National Center for Health Statistics at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The uninsured went from 14.7 percent of the population in 2008 to 15.1 percent in the first half of 2009. That was a jump of 1.6 million people to 45.4 million.
If you include the number who were uninsured at least part of the yeear, the number jumped by 2.5 million to 58.4 million people. The number without health insurance at some point during the year soared to 19.4 percent from 18.7 percent the previous year.
The problem continues to be concentrated among working age adults. The number of 18-to-64-year-olds without coverage jumped a full percentage point and now is over one in every four adults (25.3 percent). On the other hand, the number of uninsured children fell to 8.2 percent, its lowest level in more than 15 years due to the government expansion of the Children's Health Insurance Program.
Among the insured, just two-thirds of those under 65 received coverage through privage insurance companies, the lowest level since the CDC started keeping the records. About 20 percent got coverage through public plans (Medicaid, sCHIP) while the remainder went uninsured.