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Oct-20-2009 15:56printcomments

'A Wallop of a Message'

Statement by OCPP's Janet Bauer on Estimate of Recession's Hit on Health Insurance Coverage in Oregon.

Sick uninsured child

(SILVERTON, Ore.) - A report released today estimating the impact of the recession on health insurance coverage in Oregon delivers a wallop of a message to Congress on the need for meaningful health reform legislation. Oregonians can wait no longer.

According to projections by Families USA in their report, One-Two Punch: Unemployed and Uninsured, the share of working age adults without health insurance may be rising faster in Oregon than in any other state in the country.

OCPP reported in September that the latest U.S. Census Bureau data showed no significant increase in the share of Oregonians without health coverage in 2007-08 from 2005-06. But we warned that because the Census data did not include the recession's most severe period in terms of job losses, the share of Oregonians currently without health coverage was likely higher.

How much higher is the subject of the Families USA report. It estimates that the share of Oregon's working-age population who are uninsured could be as high as 25.1 percent in 2009, up 3.1 percent from 2006-2008. Families USA estimates that 84,200 working age Oregonians will have lost their health insurance due to unemployment this year. With the prospects of a "jobless recovery," the end of the recession is unlikely to bring much cheer to the many Oregonians who have lost their work or their health coverage.

Congress should waste no time in enacting health reform legislation that ensures that everyone, the unemployed and those fortunate enough to have a job, has affordable coverage.

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Henry Ruark October 21, 2009 2:26 pm (Pacific time)

Rod et al" Yours "reads the meter" almost backwards.The stimulus action was basically desperate measure by Bush cabal, followed by O.and counselors as only possible action-then, succeeding in cutting/losses and in time in reversing them. ANy such action unavoidably "political" by definition; this one saved many despite too little/too slow, served to slow, perhaps in time end, job losses, open way for wiser, stronger, longer actions just now showing results. Given 30 years desperate dissolutions suddently undermining world economy, you expect instant reversal and rapid positive gainw ? That smells "political" to me and will to many others, too. What do you SUPPORT, if anything, that O. has done ??

Rod October 21, 2009 1:16 pm (Pacific time)

If we had a situation where new jobs were developing this article would not be so sad. Obama pushed very Hard for the "unread" Stimulus Bill, which was designed to release more funds just prior to the 2010 election. So it wasn't about the economy and helping America, it was for political considerations. Observe: The number of jobs that would be created by the 2009 stimulus law (through the end of 2010) with the actual change in state payroll employment through September 2009 (the latest figures available). According to the data, 49 States and the District of Columbia have lost jobs since stimulus was enacted. Only North Dakota has seen net job creation following the February 2009 stimulus. While President Obama claimed the result of his stimulus bill would be the creation of 3.5 million jobs, the Nation has already lost a total of 2.7 million – a difference of 6.2 million jobs. What the media and Whitehouse talks about is the jobs they "saved!" If you believe that spin, then sue the schools you went to.

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