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Aging Out of Medicaid: What is the Risk of Becoming Uninsured?

This policy brief uses the most recent available data to examine the patterns of health coverage for young adults after they turn 19 and typically are no longer eligible for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).

Medicaid is a key source of coverage for children in the U.S., providing insurance to about 29 million at some point during the year. After turning 19, however, in many cases they lose their eligibility for Medicaid and CHIP and are subject to the much more limited Medicaid eligibility criteria for adults. The current recession leaves many of these young adults vulnerable to becoming uninsured given the increased difficulty of finding a job. This brief examines data from 2003 to 2007 that demonstrate the challenges these young adults face in finding and keeping coverage once they turn 19.

Policy Brief (.pdf)