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Covering the Uninsured in the United States

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Abstract:

One of the major social policy issues facing the United States in the first decade of the twenty-first century is the large number of Americans lacking health insurance. This article surveys the major economic issues around covering the uninsured. I review the facts on insurance coverage and the nature of the uninsured; explore explanations for why the United States has such a large, and growing, uninsured population; and discuss why we should care if individuals are uninsured. I then examine policy options to address the problem of the uninsured, beginning with a discussion of the key issues and available evidence and then turning to estimates from a micro-simulation model of the impact of alternative interventions to increase insurance coverage.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1257/jel.46.3.571

Publication date: September 1, 2008

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aea/jel/2008/00000046/00000003/art00001
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