NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Dr. Washington

September 21, 2010

The Census Bureau reported last week that the number of uninsured Americans jumped to almost 51 million last year.  Is this a reason to become panicked and reform the system?  No, says Investor's Business Daily (IBD).

  • For Democrats, the numbers released Thursday -- 50.7 million uninsured in 2009 vs. 46.3 million in 2008 -- are proof their bold action was needed.
  • At 50.7 million uncovered, 16.7 percent of the country was uninsured in 2009.
  • The ratio the year before was 15.4 percent -- not a sharp change from one year to the next, nor a significant deviation from the recent historical norm.
  • The rate has varied from 12.9 percent in 1987, to 15.4 percent in 1995 and 1996, to 15.8 percent in 1998, then down to 15.1 percent three years later.

While the ratio of uninsured remains steady, the number of Americans with coverage has increased by 22 million over the last decade, says Devon Herrick, senior fellow with the National Center for Policy Analysis.  At the same time the number without coverage only increased about 5.3 million.

This is why the country has been saddled with a health care bill that will cost trillions and erode the quality of treatment? asks IBD.

Source: "Dr. Washington," Investor's Business Daily, September 17, 2010.

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