Report: 26% surge in Arkansas children without health insurance

Despite decades of effort and an expansion of Medicaid, Arkansas saw a dramatic surge in the number of children going without health insurance between 2018 and 2019, according to a new report released this week.

According to the KIDS COUNT Data Book produced by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, Arkansas reported that 43,000 children were without health insurance in 2019 compared to 34,000 in 2018. That equates to a 26% increase in uninsured children, although overall only 6% of Arkansas children are without health insurance.

Some reasons for the dramatic spike in the uninsured include complications surrounding Arkansas’ work requirement to receive Medicaid expansion insurance and hesitancy among immigrant families to sign up for publicly-assisted health insurance due to the Trump administration’s efforts to alter immigration policy.

The annual report covers statistics in 50 states using household data. It noted that many states in the South and…

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