Who are the Uninsured?
In 2012, about 47 million people who are under 65 years old had problems with health or did not have at all health insurance. The majority of these individuals had legal work, but they could not receive an access to the employer-sponsored coverage. As a rule, the big part of the uninsured population has low income. Thus, it makes it difficult to receive the coverage from their employers (Garfield, Licata & Young, 2014). In this situation, adults have fewer chances to be eligible for Medicaid than children do.
According to the statistics, almost 75 percent of the uninsured population are in working families; among them, 58 percent are families with one full-time worker, and 17 percent are families with part-time workers. Many of uninsured people usually do not receive coverage from their employers. However, those who receive it find the offered coverage inappropriate. In 2013, the average cost for coverage per month was 380 dollars for a family and about 85 dollars for an individual.
The majority of uninsured people have a low or moderate level of their income. Those individuals who are below poverty are in the biggest risk of being uninsured. In 2012, about 38 percent of uninsured popuation were families of four members with the average annual income of 23,050 dollars (Blewett, Good, Call, & Davern, 2004). Hence, nine of ten of uninsured people are on the fringe of poverty.
Adults are in bigger risk to be uninsured than children. The number of uninsured adult population is up to 71 percent; 85 percent of them do not have any medical insurance. Children from low-income families can receive a medical insurance, while low-income adults have little chances to receive a full medical health insurance.
The social groups at the age of 19-25 are usually in the biggest risk of being uninsured. The first reason is their low level of income. Thus, they cannot pay for insurance or their employer does not want to give insurance for his/her employees because it is too expensive for him/her. The statistics showed that a half of all uninsured young people at the age from 19 to 25 are from families that have only one full-time worker, and the average income of such family is about 13,000 dollars. Since September 2010, the ACA has given an opportunity for young people to use their parent’s private health insurance. However, this opportunity is available till young people reach the age of 26 years; after that, they have to insure themselves personally (Cromie, 2006). Today, a great number of young people is still disproportionately insured, and this number reaches the figure of 3 million people.
The next social group, which is in risk, is minorities, such as African Americans or Hispanics. For instance, about 20 percent of all minorities in the United States are uninsured, comparing to 13 percent of white population that does not have any insurance. The main reason for this problem is the existing gaps in eligibility for Medicaid, which make it impossible to receive insurance for more than one quarter of black population in the United States.
To sum up, it can be said that the number of uninsured people is quite big in the United States. All uninsured citizens can be divided into several categories. The first category includes people who receive the low level of income, which is the main reason why they cannot pay for insurance. There are also situations when their employers do not want to provide such service. The second category is young people under the age of 26. The last category is minorities, which cannot receive insurance because of the gaps in the legislations.