Despite Recession, Some States Boosting Insurance Coverage

"Despite the economic downturn that's busting state budgets from Sacramento to Tallahassee, 26 states this year made it easier for low-income children, parents or pregnant women to get health coverage, according to a report released Tuesday by the Kaiser Family Foundation," Kaiser Health News and The Miami Herald report (KHN is a program of the foundation). "But the gains could be fleeting as most were made possible by new federal stimulus dollars, which run out at the end of 2010, along with a requirement that states maintain Medicaid eligibility levels" (Galewitz, 12/8).

Modern Healthcare: "Forty-seven states currently cover children in families with an annual income at or higher than 200% of the federal poverty level ($36,620 for a family of three), with half (24 states) covering children in families with incomes at or greater than 250% of poverty ($45,775 for a family of three), the commission report stated" (Lubell, 12/8).

Mobile, Ala., Press-Register: The report found that "the percentage of uninsured children in Alabama fell by almost half last year, despite rising unemployment and a slumping economy…. The rate dropped from 7.5 percent in 2007 to 4.4 percent in 2008 as two government programs — Medicaid and All Kids — helped compensate for people losing coverage from employer-provided insurance" (Reilly, 12/9).

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