Middle Class Losing Health Insurance Fastest

Families squeezed as prices soar, employers drop coverage
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 17, 2010 9:18 AM CDT
This middle class family may not have health insurance.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – Middle-class Americans are losing their health insurance coverage faster than any other group, with 16.2% of people in the income bracket finding themselves without coverage in 2008. That’s 12.9 million uninsured—up from 10.5 million in 2000—among families who make between $45,000 and $85,000 a year. Some 66% enjoy employer coverage, a 7% drop from a decade ago, and government programs don’t seem to be helping.

“It really underscores how the problem of uninsurance is not something simply affecting lower-income Americans but is increasingly affecting the middle class,” says an official at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, which funded the study. Cost has obviously been a factor: The price to an employer for policies increased between 43% and 55% over the 8 years in question. And the cost to an employee went up between 64% and 80%, even as income fell, the Huffington Post reports.

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