While Americans debated on and on over whether a form of watered down universal health coverage was the way forward or a plot to secretly indoctrinate American children as communist Muslims, the number of Americans who lacked health insurance for at least part of 2010 rose by 4 million people in a single year, according to numbers provided by the CDC.
And although healthcare reform opponents march behind a banner of self-determination, bootstraps and every man for himself-ishness, statistics revealed that many that have fallen through the cracks because of rising healthcare costs are middle-income Americans. CDC director Dr. Thomas Frieden spoke to the idea that only people who don’t work enough are shut out routine health care:
“The first myth is that it’s only the poor who are uninsured,” Friden said. “In fact, half of the uninsured are over the poverty level and one in three adults under 65 in the middle income range–defined arbitrarily here between $44,000 and $65,000 a year for a family of four–were uninsured at some point in the year.”
A bright spot in the troubling statistics reflected that while the number of adults who lacked insurance rose nearly 6%, the number of children in the same boat dropped 5%. According to the study, a whopping 22% of Americans between the ages of 18 and 64 lack health insurance of any kind, public or private.