Fewer Children Have Health Insurance; Report Predicts Trouble Ahead

Public News Service

The number of children without health insurance was rising nationwide and here in Pennsylvania before the COVID pandemic, and a new report predicts that trend will continue. The report, from the Georgetown University Center for Children and Families, says after years of progress getting more kids covered by health insurance, between 2016 and 2019, most of the gains for children achieved through the Affordable Care Act were wiped out. According to Laura Stephany, health policy coordinator with Allies for Children, an estimated 726,000 children nationwide are uninsured – and Pennsylvania has the eighth-highest number in the country. “We have now 128,000 children across the Commonwealth who are uninsured,” Stephany said. “And our percentage of uninsured children also rose.” She added those losses occurred when the economy was strong and unemployment was low – before the economic impact of the COVID pandemic.

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