By: Kansas Health Institute | September 15, 2022

The U.S. Census Bureau today released its latest estimates of health insurance coverage in Kansas and across the United States. Amid state and federal policy decisions to promote access to health insurance coverage during the pandemic, the national uninsured rate fell to the lowest level since the Affordable Care Act was fully implemented. However, gains in coverage were not even across states. The uninsured rate in Kansas is now significantly higher than the uninsured rate in the U.S. for the first time in decades. While the Kansas rate did not change from 2019, the national uninsured rate improved over the same time.

The uninsured rate in the U.S. was 8.6 percent in 2021, a statistically significantly decline from the 9.2 percent uninsured rate in 2019. The uninsured rate in Kansas was 9.2 percent in 2021, unchanged from 2019. This represents 28.2 million uninsured Americans and nearly 264,000 uninsured Kansans in 2021. The difference between Kansas and the U.S. in 2021 primarily reflects a higher uninsured rate in Kansas among working age adults. There are also significant disparities among Kansas residents by race and ethnicity. […] […]

Additional points from the 2021 ACS data release:

  • Adults age 19-64 are more likely to be uninsured in Kansas compared to their peers around the country (13.5 percent in Kansas compared to 12.2 percent in the U.S.).
  • After major ACA insurance expansions were enacted in 2014 — including Medicaid expansion in many states, but not Kansas — Kansas residents who identify as Hispanic or Black were more likely to be uninsured in Kansas than the U.S.
    • 20.3 percent of Kansas residents who identify as Hispanic were uninsured — a decrease from the 23.3 percent who were uninsured in 2019, but still higher than the 17.7 percent of Hispanic residents uninsured across the country.
    • 14.1 percent of Kansas residents who identify as Black or African American were uninsured compared to 9.6 percent across the country.
  • Kansans living below 138 percent of the poverty line were more likely to be uninsured than those with similar circumstances in other states (18.5 percent in Kansas compared to 14.9 percent for the U.S.). […]

    The U.S. Census Bureau will release additional data with state-level detail on October 20, 2022. Check our website frequently for additional analysis and information on the annual insurance update.

Read the full article here.