Texas Leads the Nation as Being "Uncovered" - Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Texas Leads the Nation as Being "Uncovered"

The Lone Star State leads the nation for the total number of people without health insurance.

Newschannel 6 looked into why Texas is "uncovered".  According to recent U.S. Census Bureau Data, 5 million Texans were uninsured in 2014, which is down about 700,000 Texans in 2013.

Rhea Wineinger, a Certified Application Counselor for the Health Insurance Marketplace with Community Healthcare Center told Newschannel 6, a reason for these numbers could have to do with Medicaid.

Texas did not expand Medicaid under the health care law.  Wineinger said there are a lot of people that fall within this gap as well as affordability.

“In our area, I'm over 14 counties and a lot of those areas are rural, so the transportation or whatever to get into town to have that done or to seek out the information is kind of limited for them," said Wineinger.

Wineinger also said these numbers have a lot to do with low income as well as many people not understanding subsidies.

“It’s not something that is clarified unless they actually do reach out to a Certified Application Counselor or broker or an agent, so when that is explained to them via a person, then its more understandable," said Wineinger.

The number of residents without health insurance in Texas even surpasses California.

2016 Open enrollment period for the Health Insurance Marketplace is November 1st and goes through January 31st.  The effective date for those who enroll before December 15th is January 1st.

Nationwide, about 12-percent of people are uninsured.

Taylor Barnes, Newschannel 6

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