Texas, Miss. Residents Least Insured

September 9, 2011

gallup-uninsured-sep-2011.JPGTexas residents are the most likely in the US to lack health coverage, with 27.2% reporting being uninsured in the first half of 2011, according to Gallup-Healthways-Well-Being-Index data released in September 2011. Nearby Mississippi follows, with 24.5% of residents uninsured.

Eight of the 10 states with the highest uninsured rates in the country are in the South and the other two, California and Alaska, are in the West. In addition, Texas, California, and Florida, all three of which have an uninsured rate higher than 20%, have disproportionately large Hispanic populations, the demographic group Gallup finds to be the most likely to be uninsured.

MA Has Lowest Rate of Uninsured Adults

gallup-insured-sep-2011.JPGOn the other end of the spectrum, Massachusetts, which legally requires residents to carry health insurance, has the lowest percentage of uninsured adults (5.3%). This is 42% lower than the next-lowest-rate, owned by Vermont (9.2%).

Uninsured rates are lower in the Northeast, with four of the 10 states with the fewest uninsured residents located there (Massachusetts, Vermont, Connecticut and New Jersey), and the Mid-Atlantic, with three states in the bottom 10 (Pennsylvania, Maryland and Delaware).

Two states are in the Midwest (Minnesota and Wisconsin) and one is in the West (Hawaii).

South, West Lead in Uninsured Adults

gallup-insurance-map-sep-2011.JPGLooking at a map of the US, Gallup finds that the states with higher-than-average levels of uninsured adults are all in the South and West. Lower-than-average uninsured rates are found in states in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, and Midwest (including South Dakota, Iowa and Ohio).

States with an average range of uninsured adults are spread out in the West, Midwest, and Mid-Atlantic. The South (Alabama) and Northeast (New Hampshire) also each have one state in the average range.

Almost 17% of American Adults Uninsured

An average of 16.8% of all American adults were uninsured in the first half of 2011, similar to the 16.4% in 2010. This percentage, however, has been edging up each year since 2008, at which time 14.8% of adults were uninsured, representing a 13.5% increase in uninsured adults during the past three years.

The percentage of uninsured residents in all states so far in 2011 is on par with 2010, but in most states remains higher than in 2008. More than 10% of adults lack healthcare coverage in almost all states, with more than 15% going uninsured in 29 states.

Employer Health Coverage Declines

Forty-five percent of American adults reported getting their health insurance from an employer in January through May 2011, down slightly from 45.8% in 2010, according to Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index data released in June 2011. More significantly, the percentage of US adults with employer-based health insurance has declined close to 9% from 49.2% in 2008.

About the Data: These results are based on 177,237 interviews conducted daily from January through June 2011 as part of the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index.

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