CHCF Examines California’s Uninsured in Second Annual Snapshot

California has higher proportion of uninsured residents and lower rates of employer-based coverage than the nation

The California HealthCare Foundation (CHCF) today released its second annual Snapshot: California’s Uninsured, 2004. The report, based on analysis of the Current Population Survey by the Employee Benefit Research Institute, finds that the number of uninsured Californians held steady in 2003 at approximately 6.5 million. Employment-based coverage continued to decline gradually, while enrollment in public health insurance programs, particularly Medi-Cal, increased.

According to Jill Yegian, director of CHCF’s Health Insurance Program, “The long-term growth of the uninsured population in California, and nationally, is a complex problem driven by numerous economic and demographic forces. Fluctuation in employment, family income, and citizenship status each play a significant role, as do premium costs.”

The snapshot includes:

  • Health insurance coverage sources and trends;
  • Employer-based coverage and uninsured population trends;
  • Likelihood of being uninsured by ethnicity, income, and age group;
  • Comparisons with other states; and
  • Public program eligibility.

About the Employee Benefit Research Institute

The Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) is the only nonprofit, nonpartisan organization committed exclusively to data dissemination, policy research, and education on economic security and employee benefits. For more information, visit

About the California Health Care Foundation

The California Health Care Foundation is dedicated to advancing meaningful, measurable improvements in the way the health care delivery system provides care to the people of California, particularly those with low incomes and those whose needs are not well served by the status quo. We work to ensure that people have access to the care they need, when they need it, at a price they can afford.