Florida’s number of uninsured grew by more than 1 million over last decade

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The number of uninsured Floridians has grown by more than 1 million in the last decade according to data released Tuesday by the U.S. Census Bureau, writes Kim MacQueen of the Florida Current.

As Florida grew between 2000 and 2010 so did the number of those who were not covered by either government or private health insurance.

Florida’s population grew from 16 million to 18.5 million in the last ten years, but the same time period saw a swelling in the ranks of those who had no health insurance coverage as well as growth in the number of people enrolled in Medicaid. Medicaid is a state-federal funded health insurance program. The latest estimates show that there are 3.8 million without health insurance.

Florida currently has the fifth-highest percentage of uninsured in the nation with a rate of just under 21 percent, behind Texas, New Mexico, Nevada and Mississippi. But both Nevada and Mississippi were behind Florida until 2010.

The U.S. Census data released this week painted a dismal financial picture as it showed that the median income of Americans dropped in 2010 from 2009 by 2.3 percent. The number of Americans in poverty rose from 43.6 million to 46.2 million between 2009 and 2010. The Census Bureau said this was the fourth consecutive annual increase and the highest number in the last 52 years for which poverty estimates have been published.

According to the newly-released data an estimated 16 percent of Floridians – or nearly 3 million – were living in poverty in 2010. That’s nearly 300,000 more than the Census Bureau had estimated in 2009. Continue reading here.

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Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.