Insurance Coverage is Trending Downward While Mental Health Problems Trends Upward
At the start of the pandemic, the U.S. Census Bureau launched the Household Pulse Survey to track the social and economic impact of the pandemic on Americans. Specifically, the researchers wanted to see how the pandemic changed employment status, consumer spending, food security, housing, education disruptions and dimensions of physical and mental wellness.
The results from this survey are useful to mental health and substance abuse facilities because it shows recent changes that can allow program administrators to brace for impacts early.
We took a look at the latest Pulse data centered on Insurance Coverage and Mental Wellness to give you a heads up on what may be coming your way soon.
The data table below shows that people are losing insurance coverage generally and some categories are losing it faster than others. This fact can have huge impacts on facility/provider revenue depending on the principle populations you serve.
|April 23-May 5||July 16-July 21|
|Category||% Uninsured||% Uninsured||% Change|
|Young Adults 18-24||17.1%||18.1%||+1%|
|Young Adults 25-34||16.8%||19.9%||+3.1%|
|Less than High School Education||23.6%||28.4%||+4.8%|
|High School Diploma/GED||18.8%||20.0%||+1.2%|
|Some College/Associate’s Degree||12.2%||13.5%||+1.3%|
|Bachelor’s Degree or higher||4.6%||5.7%||+1.1%|
The data also breaks down the percentage of the population of each state that is uninsured. You can look at the embedded chart below to find your state, but here are the highlights:
The five states with the lowest percentage of uninsured people in the July 16-21 survey included:
- Iowa – 4.6% uninsured
- Massachusetts – 5.7% uninsured
- Connecticut – 6.3% uninsured
- West Virginia – 6.3% uninsured
- New Jersey – 6.9% uninsured
The five states with the highest percentage of the population uninsured in the July 16-23 survey was:
- Mississippi – 27.2% uninsured
- Texas – 26.4% uninsured
- Oklahoma – 23.5% uninsured
- Georgia – 22% uninsured
- South Carolina – 19.8% uninsured
Researchers at the U.S. Census Bureau and Center for Disease Control have also been tracking symptoms of anxiety and depression among people in America. A slow steady increase in symptoms may signal an increased demand for mental health services in the near future.
Here are some numbers to consider:
|April 23-May 5||July 16-July21|
|Less than High School||45.4%||47.3%||+1.9%|
|Some College/Associate’s Degree||38.5%||43.3%||+4.8%|
|Bachelor’s Degree or higher||30.7%||35.7%||+5.0%|
Looking specifically at the last survey conducted July 16-21, here are two results that stand out:
Across the country 18-29 year old respondents reported the highest levels of anxiety and depressive disorder symptoms with 53.4%.
Residents of Oregon
In Oregon, where respondents have been struggling with both the pandemic and large protests, reported 50.2% frequency of anxiety and depressive symptoms.
The pandemic is both removing opportunities and adding new ones. As more Americans lose insurance, this will put pressure on facilities and providers to either reduce rates for self-payors or reduce services to accommodate those who have insurance. Either way, facility managers and providers will have to remain nimble to proactively adjust.
Our staff remains on the lookout for information to help facilities and providers adapt to rapidly changing circumstances. Consider subscribing to our monthly newsletter to stay plugged in.