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from Spencer’s Benefits Reports: In 2009, among individuals younger than age 65 with private health insurance, 20.4% had a flexible spending arrangement (FSA) for medical expenses, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This is an increase from 2007, when 16.7% of individuals under age 65 with private insurance were in a family with a FSA.
The CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) reported information based on data from the 2009 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS). The report, Health Insurance Coverage: Early Release of Estimates From the National Health Interview Survey, 2009, includes selected estimates of health insurance coverage for the civilian noninstitutionalized U.S. population, along with comparable estimates from the 1997-2008 NHIS.
The CDC survey examined coverage under high deductible health plans (HDHP), which constitute a growing share of both employment-based and directly purchased health plans. Based on data from the 2009 NHIS, among individuals younger than age 65 years who had private health insurance, enrollment in HDHPs was 22.4%. This includes 6.3% who were enrolled in a consumer-driven health plan (CDHP, a plan with a health savings account (HSA)), and 16.1% who were enrolled in an HSA-qualified CDHP, but had not enrolled in an HSA. In the two years since 2007, HDHP enrollment increased by five percentage points from 17.5% in 2007.
Among the same population group with employment-based coverage, enrollment in an HDHP was 20.2%, up from 15.6% in 2007, compared with 46.9% of those with a private plan purchased or obtained outside of employment. The percentage of individuals with nongroup health plans that were HDHPs increased from 39.2% in 2007 to 46.9% in 2009. For individuals younger than age 65, approximately 8% of private health plans were individually-purchased, the CDC reported.
Uninsured Rate Hits High Mark In 2009
The CDC survey also examined uninsured rates, and found that in 2009, 12.4% (32.6 million) of individuals younger than age 65 lacked health insurance for more than a year.
In 2009, the following numbers and proportions of people were or had been uninsured:
|Uninsured||Younger than age 65||Ages 18 to 64|
|At the time of the interview||17.5%||21.1%|
|For at least part of the year||19.4%||25.6%|
|For more than a year||10.9%||15.4%|
The rate of uninsurance in 2009 was highest among young adults, ages 18 through 24—29.6%. Among the 20 largest states, the rate of uninsurance ranged from a low of 3.7% in Massachusetts (the only state with a health insurance mandate) to a high of 24.6% in Texas. The percentage of adults with private coverage (as opposed to public health insurance) at the time of the interview was 62.9% nationally, with a high of 75.2% in Massachusetts and a low of 52.2% in Texas.
For more information, visit http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nhis/earlyrelease/insur201006.htm.
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