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One in 12 N.D. Children are Uninsured

Current estimates indicate that the 2008 through 2010 three-year average of uninsured children in North Dakota was 8 percent (approximately 12,000 children), which is roughly equivalent to one out of every 12 children in the state. Nationally, 9.9 percent were without health insurance coverage.

This month’s “Economic Brief,” a monthly publication from the North Dakota State Data Center at North Dakota State University, focuses on those children ages 0 to 17 without health insurance in North Dakota. The Current Population Survey’s Annual Social and Economic Supplement (ASEC), which is a joint project between the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the U.S. Census Bureau, provides annual estimates of the number of people with or without health insurance by selected characteristics.

The ASEC is designed to collect statistically reliable estimates primarily at the national level. Because state estimates are less reliable due to relatively small sample sizes, which can cause state estimates to fluctuate widely year to year, the Census Bureau recommends using three-year averages to compare estimates across states and two-year averages to evaluate changes in state estimates through time.

Although confidence intervals around the estimates can be relatively large for states such as North Dakota, ASEC statistics are one way of estimating the number of children at risk.

Comparisons of all states using three-year average uninsured rates for 2008 through 2010 show that Texas had the highest proportion (16.9 percent) of uninsured children in the nation and Massachusetts had the lowest (3.4 percent). North Dakota’s rate for uninsured children ranked in the middle of the 50 states.

When examining the two-year averages from 2008 through 2009 and 2009 through 2010 for North Dakota, it appears that the proportion of uninsured children in our state increased by 1.2 percentage points. However, because of the small sample size, this amount of change is not statistically significant.

“This means that the difference in the two periods may be an artifact of the sample rather than a true representation of change,” says Richard Rathge, State Data Center director.

Hawaii was the only state that had a statistically significant change in the proportion of uninsured children. It had a decrease of 1.5 percent through the two-year averages.

NDSU Agriculture Communication - Nov. 16, 2011

Source:Richard Rathge, (701) 231-8621,
Editor:Rich Mattern, (701) 231-6136,
Health Insurance by State Preview
(1115 Economic Brief.pdf - 353.24 Kb)
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