Michael Goldberg | Oct 16, 2020
An estimated 82,000 Utah children were uninsured last year, which constitutes a 39 percent spike since 2016, according to a new Georgetown University Center for Children and Families report. At the 39 percent, Utah had the third largest increase in its child uninsured rate nationwide, the report found. The state’s rate of uninsured children was 8.3 percent in 2019, compared to a national rate of 5.7 percent.
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While these numbers reveal that Utah has been one of the hardest hit states in terms of coverage loss, they reflect a national trend that saw 726,000 more children lose health coverage across the country. Since 2016, a great deal of coverage gain that resulted from the Affordable Care Act for children has been reversed.
For many years, the United States was on a positive trajectory in reducing the number and rate of uninsured children; in 2016, the nation attained a historic low of 3.6 million uninsured children,” reads the report. “This progress occurred as a result of expansions of public coverage—primarily Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)—and was accelerated by the implementation of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) major coverage expansions in 2014. As employer-sponsored insurance became increasingly unaffordable for dependents, public coverage ameliorated the impacts of private