As the U.S. continues to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic, disparities in who has access to healthcare are more pronounced than ever. Though the federal government and many insurers have worked to keep the costs of testing and treating COVID-19 low to manage the broader public health crisis, the impacts of the pandemic on healthcare could be felt for years to come.
One of the most noteworthy challenges over the past year has been widespread losses of jobs and income as a result of COVID-19 shutdowns and business failures. With those economic shocks, come reduced access to health insurance. Healthcare coverage is closely linked to employment in the United States, with more than 55% of Americans having employer-sponsored health coverage. Permanent job losses resulting from COVID-19 shutdowns and business failures now total in the millions, which creates an enormous barrier to health insurance coverage for many Americans. And for those who did not already have coverage through an employer and those who find themselves without health insurance due to job loss, the costs of purchasing health policies can be prohibitively expensive.
To find the states with the highest and lowest uninsured rates, researchers at Sidecar Health used data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey. The analysis found that in Virginia, 646,321 residents don’t have health insurance, which breaks down to 9.3% of the population.
For more information, a detailed methodology, and complete results, you can find the original report on Sidecar Health’s website: https://sidecarhealth.com/articles/american-cities-with-the-highest-and-lowest-uninsured-rates