Fewer Kentuckians lacked health insurance in 2010, the Kentucky Health Issues Poll has found. About one in four Kentuckians ages 18 to 64 were uninsured last year, much the same as in 2008. Last year, at the depth of the recession, the uninsured were one out of three.
Young adults tend to be uninsured more often than older adults. More than one-third of adults ages 18 to 29 in the latest poll said they did not have health insurance, double the rate for adults 46 to 64.
"It's encouraging to see the number of currently uninsured Kentuckians decreasing because this suggests that they will have better access to needed health care services," said Dr. Susan Zepeda, CEO of the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky, which co-sponsored the poll. "However, we remain concerned about the one-third of Kentuckians who had a gap in health coverage at some point in the past year. If a serious illness strikes, it can have catastrophic effects on an uninsured family's finances."
The poll was conducted Dec. 3-22 and Dec. 27-28 by the Institute for Policy Research at the University of Cincinnati. It interviewed a random sample of 1,677 adults, 1,469 by landline phone and 208 via cell phone. The poll was also sponsored by The Health Foundation of Greater Cincinnati.
Respondents were asked more than 50 questions that covered a range of health-related topics, including financial stresses related to health care; characteristics of their neighborhood (examples: is it easy to buy fresh produce or ride a bicycle?); degree of civic engagement, such as donation of blood, work on a community project or attendance at a political meeting or rally; using cell phones while driving; health insurance coverage; the new health care law; and smoking policy. To see poll results on the majority of these issues, click here.