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New study shows number of uninsured women on the rise

Posted On Tue, July 24, 2012

The Commonwealth Fund released a new study on Friday that showed a 5 percent increase in uninsured women in the United States from 2000 to 2010. Further, the research revealed a startling increase in underinsured women from 10.3 million in 2003 to 16.7 million in 2010.

"Women, particularly those in their childbearing years, are uniquely at risk for being unable to afford the care they need, having trouble with medical bills, and having high out-of-pocket costs," said Commonwealth Fund vice president and report co-author Sara Collins.

The news comes just a few weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court's decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act. Commonwealth estimates that the number of uninsured women will drop from 20 percent to 8 percent after the legislation is in full effect.

That increase in medical insurance coverage will prove crucial moving forward, after research published by the International Prevention Research Institute showed a growing prevalence of breast cancer across the globe, including the United States.

But even as lower insurance rates and increased insurance coverage provide help for those at risk for breast cancer, there are still obstacles that will prevent everyone in need from receiving care. Most notably, the institute found that low-income women suffer from a much higher death rate than high-income women.

Even with assistance from the ACA, resolving the disparities inherent in that income gap appears crucial to ensuring quality care for women in the United States.

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