Proportion of Uninsured, Low-Income Workers Increased

The proportion of low-income workers who were uninsured increased from 26% in 1996 to 34.5% by 2006, according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). The average household income for a family in 2006 was $40,888.

The federal agency’s analysis found that among full-time, low-income workers between 1996 and 2006, there was a significant increase in the proportion of workers ages 18 to 34 without health insurance, increasing from 30% to 38%. For workers ages 35 to 49, the comparable shift in uninsured rates went from 22% to 32%.

According to AHRQ, their analysis also found that the proportion of uninsured workers in firms with less than 25 employees jumped from 39% to 50%. Uninsured workers in firms employing 25 to 99 employees and in those with 100 or more employees saw their ranks rise from 22% to 31% and from 11% to 14%, respectively.

Among industry categories, workers in professional services had the largest increase in the proportion without health insurance, expanding from 11.5% to 26.4%.

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