The several-year respite from growth in the number of uninsured Americans has ended.
5 million of whom were children--were either uninsured or underinsured, an increase of more than 2 million individuals from 2001.
The key to understanding the uninsured is that it's not a monolithic group, but rather a set of different people facing different challenges, and there are a variety of solutions that can have an immediate and positive impact," said Leonard Schaeffer, chairman and chief executive officer of WellPoint Health Networks Inc.
The rise in the uninsured population is going hand in hand with skyrocketing costs.
A startling number of the uninsured aren't receiving necessary care.
As the number of uninsured people increases, so does the pressure on private insurers.
Understanding the makeup of the uninsured population helps companies look at how to structure their products and determine whether they need to change something about a product to make it more attractive for an employer to offer coverage, said Ray Baxter, senior vice president of community benefit for Kaiser Foundation Health Plan Inc.
Currently, about 19% of the uninsured population are between the ages of 18 and 24.
For example, the greatest proportion of the uninsured live in the South and West, with the largest percentage in California, New Mexico and Texas.