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Kentucky Health Issues Poll: One in four Kentucky adults concerned about losing health insurance

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Twenty-four percent of Kentucky adults ages 18-64 are concerned they may lose their health coverage, according to the latest Kentucky Health Issues Poll (KHIP). Due in part to Medicaid expansion, public insurance coverage has increased from 29 percent in 2016 to 35 percent in 2017, but 15 percent of Kentucky adults have no health coverage and an additional 6 percent currently have insurance but were without it some time in the prior 12 months.

KHIP is an annual poll of Kentucky adults about health issues funded jointly by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky and Interact for Health.

Employer-sponsored health insurance declined from 45 percent in 2016 to 39 percent in 2017. This is the lowest rate since 2012, when employer-provided insurance was 37 percent.

“Health insurance and good health go hand in hand,” said Ben Chandler, president and CEO of the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky. “Preventative care and wellness checks are as necessary as treatment for chronic illness, and too many Kentucky adults are still going without the care they need due to lack of insurance.”

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The proportion of Kentucky adults who said they had some form of public health insurance is again at 35 percent, the same rate reported in 2015 and the highest rate since KHIP began tracking health insurance coverage in 2008. Public health insurance for adults includes Medicare, Medicaid, military benefits, and combinations of the three sources. In the years prior to ACA implementation, the proportion of Kentucky adults with public insurance had been as low as 11 percent in 2008 to as high as 27 percent in 2012.

“As this poll shows, there are still troubling gaps in insurance coverage for Kentuckians. The Foundation is committed to educating policymakers on the health needs of the state, and KHIP is an integral part of informing legislators,” said Charlie Ross, Chair of the Foundation’s Board of Directors.

A copy of the poll is available online.

From Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky

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