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Indiana Gains In Children's Healthcare Coverage
Updated November 9, 2016 7:05 AM | Filed under: Health
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(INDIANAPOLIS) - According to recently released data from the U. S. Census Bureau examining health insurance coverage rates for the period 2013 - 2015, children's uninsured levels experienced the largest two year decline on record.

This decline coincided with the implementation of most of the provisions of the Affordable Care Act. The United States has achieved a historic milestone as 95% of children have health care coverage.

Despite these achievements, a recent poll found that most people think the uninsured rate for children is increasing despite the fact that it has been decreasing. In fact, the child uninsured rate has been improving for at least a decade, and the Affordable Care Act helped bring it down even further. The Affordable Care Act built upon the successful and cost-effective Medicaid and Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), Hoosier Healthwise in Indiana, which offers affordable coverage to many children in our state and across the country.

According to a new report by Georgetown University's Center for Children and Families, children in our state have benefitted from this positive trend in healthcare coverage. The number of uninsured children in Indiana declined from 8.2% to 6.5%. This success is due in part to the launching of HIP 2.0 in 2015. When coverage was expanded to more uninsured adults, many parents were able to enroll and learned their children were eligible too.

While Covering Kids & Families (CKF) is pleased by the trend, they are committed to getting all Hoosier kids enrolled. "Our uninsured rate is still higher than the national average of 4.8% and more than two points higher than all neighboring states. For us that means our local coalitions will continue to partner with schools and community organizations so that 100% of Hoosiers have access to healthcare coverage and services" stated Susan Jo Thomas, Executive Director. Although the overall number of uninsured children in Indiana declined by about 18%, Indiana still has more uninsured children than neighboring Illinois that has twice the population of children.

Having more children covered is positive news for Indiana's schools, health care system and economy. When children have health care coverage, they are able to get the preventive care they need to stay healthy and show up for school ready to learn. It also means their families can afford to take their children to the doctor when they are sick so they don't wind up getting sicker and having to rely on more expensive care in the hospital.

For the 106,000 children in Indiana that did not have healthcare coverage last year, Covering Kids & Families can help families enroll in coverage. In 2015, Covering Kids & Families local coalitions and partners helped more than 36,000 Hoosiers apply for healthcare coverage. Many uninsured children are eligible for subsidized coverage in the marketplace or through Hoosier Healthwise. Families interested in enrolling their children in affordable health care coverage should contact Covering Kids & Families at www.ckfindiana.org or call (317) 222-1850 for information on their local coalition.

Study released by Georgetown University Health Policy Institute Center for Children and Families.

About Covering Kids & Families of Indiana

Covering Kids & Families of Indiana (CKF-IN) is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to ensuring all Hoosiers have accessible healthcare coverage. CKF-IN promotes and facilitates healthcare coverage by building coalitions that enroll, educate, and support Hoosiers and by advocating for strong inclusive public policies. For more information, visit www.ckfindiana.org



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