Almost 1 in 10 King County children who qualify for free health insurance have no coverage.
Without health insurance, most Americans could not afford adequate health care – including life- and cost-saving preventive care. Those lacking coverage often forego necessary care until a medical crisis forces them to seek expensive and potentially risky emergency treatment.
As part of a survey conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, King County adults were asked about health insurance coverage for children in their households. Combining data from 2010-2012, 5.1% of King County children under age 18 did not have health insurance. This represents about 21,000 children.
- Hispanic, Asian, American Indian/Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, and Black children were more likely to be uninsured than White non-Hispanic children. About 1 out of every 10 American Indian/Alaska Native, anad Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander children was uninsured.
- Children in households with incomes below 138% of federal poverty guidelines were more than 5 times more likely to be uninsured than children from households with incomes at or above 400% of the poverty guidelines.
- Children in households with incomes below 200% of federal poverty guidelines currently qualify for free coverage in Washington. However, almost 1 in 10 children in this income bracket was uninsured.
In January of 2014, eligibility for subsidized health insurance for Washington children expanded to cover children in households with income between 300% and 400% of federal poverty guidelines.
- Medicaid eligibility for children through age 18 continues at no cost to those in households with income up to 200% of the 2013 federal poverty guidelines ($47,100 for a family of 4).
- Children in households with incomes between 200% and 300% of the federal poverty guidelines remain eligible for low-cost health insurance through the Apple Health for Kids Program in Washington State.
- With their families, children in households with income between 300% and 400% of the federal poverty guidelines are now eligible for income-based subsidies in the health insurance marketplace.