Medicaid Enrollment and Spending

  • Medicaid rolls jumped in 2009, By Kevin Sack, September 30, 2010, New York Times: “Joblessness and the accompanying loss of health benefits drove an additional 3.7 million people into the Medicaid program last year, the largest single-year increase since the early days of the government insurance plan, according to an annual survey by the Kaiser Family Foundation. Enrollment in the program, which provides comprehensive coverage to the low-income uninsured, grew by 8.2 percent from December 2008 to December 2009, the second-largest rate of increase in the 10 years that Kaiser has conducted the survey. There were 48.5 million people on Medicaid at the end of 2009, or about one of every six Americans. Every state showed enrollment growth, with nine above 15 percent and Nevada and Wisconsin above 20 percent…”
  • Medicaid enrollment spikes to 48M in weak economy, By Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar (AP), September 30, 2010, Washington Post: “A record number of Americans signed up for Medicaid last year, as the recession wiped out jobs and workplace health coverage. A report released Thursday by the nonprofit Kaiser Family Foundation found that enrollment in the safety-net medical insurance program jumped to more than 48 million – a record 15.7 percent share of the U.S. population. With the economy barely improving, states are forecasting a 6 percent increase in the rolls next year, meaning another strain on their cash-depleted budgets. The Medicaid numbers are the latest piece to emerge in a grim statistical picture of the recession’s toll. The ranks of the working-age poor climbed to the highest level since the 1960s last year, according to a recent Census report. Nearly 12 million households received food stamps, a record…”
  • States cutting Medicaid benefits as they stagger under economic downturn, By Phil Galewitz, September 30, 2010, Kaiser Health News: “In Arizona, about 640,000 adult Medicaid recipients will lose coverage tomorrow for podiatry care, insulin pumps and most dental services. In Washington, D.C., in November, doctors who treat 250,000 Medicaid patients are scheduled to see their fees cut 20 percent. These are some of the newest cutbacks in Medicaid as states grapple with surging enrollment — and spending — in the government health insurance program for the poor that covers nearly 49 million Americans. Driven by the economic downturn, enrollment in the state-federal program rose by 8.5 percent in fiscal year 2010, which for most states ended in June, according to study released today by the Kaiser Family Foundation’s Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured. State spending on Medicaid jumped an average of 8.8 percent in 2010, the biggest increase in eight years and the second biggest jump in two decades, the study found. The growing costs for Medicaid come as the faltering economy has stripped state tax revenues…”

American Community Survey

  • Saying no to ‘I do,’ with the economy in mind, By Erik Eckholm, September 28, 2010, New York Times: “The United States crossed an important marital threshold in 2009, with the number of young adults who have never married surpassing, for the first time in more than a century, the number who were married. A long-term decline in marriage accelerated during the severe recession, according to new data from the Census Bureau, with more couples postponing marriage and often choosing to cohabit without tying the knot…”
  • D.C., suburbs show disturbing increases in childhood poverty, By Carol Morello and Dan Keating, September 29, 2010, Washington Post: “Three out of 10 children in the nation’s capital were living in poverty last year, with the number of poor African American children rising at a breathtaking rate, according to census statistics released Tuesday. Among black children in the city, childhood poverty shot up to 43 percent, from 36 percent in 2008 and 31 percent in 2007. That was a much sharper increase than the two percentage-point jump, to 36 percent, among poor black children nationwide last year…”
  • Census figures in region show poor getting poorer, By Alfred Lubrano and Dylan Purcell, September 29, 2010, Philadelphia Inquirer: “The poor got poorer and the well-off didn’t get any better in the Philadelphia region in 2009, according to U.S. census figures released Tuesday. Philadelphia retained its unwanted position as the poorest among the country’s 10 largest cities, with a poverty rate of 25 percent. Making a bad situation worse, the number of children in poverty under age 18 in the city fell to one in three…”
  • Census says recession woes less severe here, By Gary Rotstein, September 29, 2010, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: “The economic downturn has not spared the Pittsburgh region, but household data released by the U.S. Census Bureau Tuesday offered additional evidence that the hardships have been less severe than for the nation as a whole. The poverty rate within the seven-county metropolitan area worsened from 12.2 percent in 2008 to 12.3 percent in 2009, according to the American Community Survey, compared with a more drastic change from 13.3 percent to 14.3 percent for the U.S. overall. Pennsylvania had a poverty rate of 12.5 percent last year, compared with 12.3 percent in 2008…”
  • Mass. buoyed in recession, data indicate, By Maria Sacchetti, September 29, 2010, Boston Globe: “Massachusetts appeared to weather the recession better than other states last year, according to census figures released yesterday, with stable poverty rates and stagnant annual income. But analysts disagree about whether the figures reflect a strong economy or instead mask more serious troubles statewide…”
  • Census shows recession hit broad swath of R.I., By Paul Edward Parker and Paul Davis, September 29, 2010, Providence Journal: “New U.S. Census data show that the deep recession hit Rhode Islanders from all walks of life hard in 2009, as unemployment reached a record high 12.7 percent during the biggest economic slowdown since the Great Depression. More Rhode Island families lived in poverty. More grandparents provided inexpensive childcare for their grandchildren. More workers joined carpools to save money on the daily commute. No groups escaped. Even couples planning families put off the births of their children until better times…”
  • In hard times, more Middle TN families share a roof, By Chris Echegaray, September 29, 2010, The Tennessean: “The recession refilled a Brentwood couple’s empty nest – a common effect according to newly released census data. Linda and Carlos Reyes’ two adult children came back home last year because of the poor economy. Their son was moving between his parents’ Brentwood home and Alabama, where his wife had just lost her job as a teacher. The daughter, to save money on gas, often would stay with her parents, and still does…”
  • Census snapshot shows bleak picture for many Oklahomans amid recession, By Paul Monies, September 29, 2010, The Oklahoman: “More children had health insurance coverage last year even as the number of adults without coverage remained flat in Oklahoma, according to Census Bureau estimates released Tuesday. Meanwhile, poverty rates increased, and median household income declined last year as Oklahoma continued to feel the effects of a recession that began in late 2007. The share of households on food stamps in the state rose to 12.1 percent last year, up from 10.9 percent in 2008…”
  • Number of poor in Tulsa, Oklahoma rises, By Curtis Killman, September 29, 2010, Tulsa World: “The percentage of people living in poverty increased in the state and Tulsa from 2008 to 2009, according to U.S. Census Bureau figures released Tuesday. Nearly one in five Tulsans reported incomes in 2009 below the poverty level. The estimated 19.5 percent of Tulsans with poverty-level incomes in 2009 reversed a two-year decline in the number of poor in the city, according to Census Bureau statistics…”
  • Poverty on rise in Lincoln; researchers say survey may be misleading, By Mark Andersen, September 28, 2010, Lincoln Journal Star: “The number of Lincoln households earning less than $10,000 last year increased 52 percent from 2008, according to census survey data released Tuesday. That jump may mark a dramatic increase in Lincoln poverty, but then again, other dramatic swings in the survey suggest its findings should be regarded with caution…”
  • In tough economic times, Coloradans go back to school, census stats show, By David Olinger, September 29, 2010, Denver Post: “In hard times, college enrollment programs can experience great times – particularly those that teach specific job skills. While Colorado residents suffered wage cuts and job losses during a national recession, the number of them paying to go to college grew, according to census survey data released Tuesday. In Denver, enrollment in college and graduate schools jumped by nearly 10,000 students in one year, to about 47,000 citywide, the 2009 American Community Survey estimated. Leading the boom was Community College of Denver, a job-oriented school whose student population nearly doubled in two years…”
  • Sacramento area incomes drop 6%, to lowest level in a decade, By Phillip Reese, September 29, 2010, Sacramento Bee: “State worker furloughs, an anemic construction industry and widespread layoffs last year pushed Sacramento-area household incomes to their lowest level in at least a decade, census figures released Tuesday show. The region’s median household income – the figure in the middle of a ranked list of household incomes – was $57,361 during 2009, down 6 percent from 2008, after adjusting for inflation. That’s a bigger fall than the statewide drop of 3 percent…”
  • New data offers proof: The recession hurts, By Jeannie Kever, September 28, 2010, Houston Chronicle: “Stop us if you’ve heard this before: Household income is down. Poverty levels are up. People who still have jobs are working fewer hours. Census data released Tuesday confirmed what most Americans already knew. ‘It is very clear how extensive the economic difficulties are,’ said Steve Murdock, the former state demographer who now is on the faculty at Rice University. ‘Health insurance. Job hours worked. Poverty rates. Income. Those are all in the wrong direction in terms of what we’d like to see for America.’ The trends held true at all levels in the 2009 American Community Survey data, which offers a snapshot of the nation’s economic and demographic status. The first results from the 2010 Census will be released later this year…”
  • More people living in poverty in Austin, survey finds, By Juan Castillo, September 28, 2010, Austin-American Statesman: “Nearly 1 out of every 5 Austinites lived in poverty in 2009, an increase from the previous year, the U.S. Census Bureau said Tuesday. Among the most striking increases in poverty rates were among Austin’s children. According to figures from the bureau’s American Community Survey, 27 percent of related children under 18 and 31.5 percent of related children under 5 lived in poverty in 2009 – 5 percent and 6 percent increases, respectively, from 2008…”
  • 1 in 5 Tampa Bay area kids live in poverty, census says, By Kevin Wiatrowski, September 29, 2010, Tampa Tribune: “The latest government estimates, released Tuesday by the U.S. Census Bureau, show the number of people living in poverty has been growing steadily since 2006 in Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco and Polk counties. Children have been hit the hardest in the Bay area, where about one in five people younger than 18 live in poverty, according to census estimates. Seniors, on the other had, remain insulated from the region’s growing poverty. In the Tampa Bay area, fewer than 10 percent have fallen into poverty, while fewer than 1 percent, on average, lack health insurance, Census figures show…”
  • Census snapshot of South Florida: Poverty up, wealth down, By Douglas Hanks, September 29, 2010, Miami Herald: “Housing values crashed. Renting became more popular. Much of the population slipped a rung down the wealth ladder. And Miami seems to be booming. A deluge of Census data released Tuesday crystalized some of the trends under way as South Florida reckons with a wrenching economic downturn, a tepid recovery and a transformed real estate market. One side effect: Thousands of cheap urban condos built during the boom are now attracting renters and bargain hunters. The city of Miami, the center of the nation’s condo building binge, saw its population surge 25 percent this year to about 433,000, according to the numbers…”