Despite advances made by the Affordable Care Act, requiring everyone in the United States to obtain health insurance, Latino and African-American are the groups with the highest proportion of the uninsured population in the U.S.
In a new study released by the Office of Minority Health at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, African-American and Latino males under the age of 35 exhibit were part of this group.
Lack of health insurance coverage limits access to the health care system, which reduces preventive service utilization and potentially increases the risk for adverse health outcomes in these communities.
Other findings from the report include:
- Among uninsured adult males, ages 19-34, Latino and African-American males exhibited the highest estimates of uninsurance.
- A high proportion of uninsured Latino adult males (81 percent) report having a full-time worker in the household.
- Among uninsured adult males, 28% of Asians and 24% of Latinos reside in limited English proficient households.
Historically, Latinos have faced significant barriers to accessing affordable health insurance, and these barriers have contributed to significant health disparities:
- 32 percent of Latinos were uninsured in 2009 – higher than any other racial or ethnic group – and half of Latinos did not have a regular doctor, compared with only one-fifth of white Americans.
- Twenty percent of low-income Latino youth have gone a year without a health care visit – a rate three times higher than that for high-income whites
- In 2006, almost half of Latinos reported they did not always get care when they needed it,compared with 43 percent of blacks and 41 percent of white Americans.