Wednesday, October 24, 2012

County rates of rural uninsured vary greatly

The rate of uninsured aged 18 to 65 in rural counties has grown faster than in exurban and urban counties since 2005, but varied greatly from county to county, according to Census Bureau data analyzed by Bill Bishop of the Daily Yonder. (Yonder map: Red counties, more than 25 percent uninsured; green, less than 12 percent)
In 2005, the rate of rural uninsured wasn't much different than the rate of uninsured in cities or exurban counties, which are part of metropolitan regions, but where most residents live in rural settings, but in 2010 most rural counties exceeded the national average of 17.7 percent. The overall rural rate is 18.4 percent.

"You don't have to look too hard at the map to see where the counties are in rural America that have the smallest percentages of people with health insurance," Bishop writes. "Thirty-two of the 50 rural and exurban counties with the largest percentages of uninsured are in Texas." The top 10 counties with the lowest rates of uninsured are in Massachusetts, New Mexico, New Jersey, Iowa and South Dakota, Wisconsin and Minnesota. Seven of those 10 are exurban. (Read more)

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