The short- and long-term health and economic benefits of children having health insurance are well-supported in research. North Carolina has been a national leader in rates of children insured. After years of improvements, however, recent data are startling—for the first time in a decade, NC Child reports, North Carolina’s rate of insured children dropped in 2018. About 119,000 children in our state are now without health insurance.
North Carolina is one of 14 states that has not yet chosen to accept available federal funding to expand Medicaid. Since research demonstrates that children are more likely to have insurance—and go to the doctor—when their parents are insured, closing the adult coverage gap could be an effective strategy for raising child insurance rates.