A Profile of Kansas’s Low-Wage Uninsured Workers

The recently enacted American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP) includes new large financial incentives for states to extend health insurance coverage to low-wage workers and other adults earning less than $17,775 a year.¹ These incentives apply to regular spending in a state’s Medicaid program and offer a five-percentage point across the board increase in the federal share for a 24-month period after the state extends coverage. The Kaiser Family Foundation estimates that Kansas’s budget would see a net gain of $250 million over a two-year period if the state expanded Medicaid.² Approximately 82,700 uninsured nonelderly adults, or 38 percent of the state’s uninsured adult population, would gain health insurance.³

This fact sheet examines which workers and industries would benefit from expansion of Medicaid coverage.The top three industry sectors in Kansas employing low-wage uninsured workers are hospitality, retail, and health care and social assistance, accounting for approximately 44 percent of those working without insurance (see Table 1). Restaurants and other food service establishments are the top employers for these workers. The most common occupational sector for low-wage, uninsured workers is food preparation and serving, followed by sales (see Table 2).

Endnotes

¹For more information on the provisions of the law, see E. Park and S. Corlette, “American Rescue Plan Act: Health Coverage Provisions Explained” (Washington DC: Georgetown University Center for Children and Families and Center on Health Insurance Reform, March 2021), available at https://ccf.georgetown.edu/2021/03/11/american-rescue-plan-act-health-coverage-provisions-explained/.
² R. Rudowitz, B. Corallo, and R. Garfield, “New Incentive for States to Adopt the ACA Medicaid Expansion: Implications for State Spending” (Washington DC: Kaiser Family Foundation, March 2021), available at https://www.kff.org/medicaid/issue-brief/new-incentive-for-states-to-adopt-the-aca-medicaid-expansion-implications-for-state-spending/.
³Kaiser Family Foundation, “Who Could Medicaid Reach with Expansion in Kansas?” (Washington DC: Kaiser Family Foundation, February 2021), available at https://files.kff.org/attachment/factsheet-medicaid-expansion-KS.
4 All data are derived from the American Community Survey (2019) most from the Public Use Microdata Sample; county data calculated from American Community Survey five-year (2015-2019) prepared tables. Contact authors for more information on sources of data and methods.

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