Most Americans Aren’t Aware, but the Number of Children Without Health Insurance Is Dropping Every Year

By William Tomasko

Are you part of the 13 percent? 

That’s the percent of Americans who realize that the number of uninsured children has actually declined in the past five years, according to a new poll from Georgetown University’s Center for Children and Families (CCF).

If you’re part of the 55 percent who think the number of kids without coverage is going up or 30 percent who think the number has remained the same, then you’re in for a pleasant surprise when you check out CCF’s new report, “Children’s Health Coverage on the Eve of the Affordable Care Act.”

CCF found that the number of uninsured children has gone down every year since 2008—from 9.3 percent to 7.2 percent in 2012. Even despite the economic crisis and sluggish recovery, and thanks in large part to successes in Medicaid and CHIP enrollment.

Watch Joan Alker, executive director of CCF and a co-author of the new report, introduce the findings:


In a blog post for the Huffington Post, Alker described the lessons for helping Americans get covered under the Affordable Care Act: 

This success story for children reflects years of hard work on the part of federal and state leaders, and other stakeholders — including the philanthropic community, children’s advocates, community leaders and health care providers, that worked cooperatively to streamline a path to coverage for uninsured children through Medicaid and CHIP.

Our country’s success is a testament to what states can accomplish when they “lean in,” have adequate funding, and work with the federal government to meet the needs of families.

We’re committed to spreading the word about those streamlined paths to coverage. For example, our fact sheet on strategies for states to accelerate their enrollment efforts includes notifying uninsured parents of children who are covered under Medicaid and CHIP that they may be eligible for new health insurance options.

 The report concludes: “As is clear from the success with children to date, progress will not happen overnight and requires a sustained commitment.” And we’re excited to be a part of that commitment at Enroll America!

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