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'The Business of Health Care Report'

Uninsured Crisis in Texas
07/20/2009

Click to listen to the taped broadcast.

I’m Doug Hawthorne, CEO of Texas Health Resources, with “The Business of Health Care Report.”

I currently have the privilege of representing North Texas as chairman of the national Uninsured Task Force of the Healthcare Leadership Council. The Healthcare Leadership Council is a coalition of chief executives from across the nation who work together to develop plans, policies, and programs aimed at making healthcare affordable, high-quality, and accessible to all Americans.

The uninsured crisis in Texas and across the country is mounting. The United States is the wealthiest nation in the world, and yet 46 million people are without health insurance. Texas still has the highest rate of uninsured in the nation, with one in four Texans lacking health insurance. In urban cities like Dallas and Houston, that number has climbed to one in three.

More than 1.5 million of Texas’ uninsured residents are children. Of those, 50 percent are eligible for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program, but are not enrolled.

The cost of employer-based family health insurance has skyrocketed in recent years, rising five times faster than median family income since the year 2000. More than half of Texas’ private businesses did not offer health care benefits in 2007, and that percentage is likely to increase as costs continue to rise.

To learn more about what our nation’s health care leaders are doing to increase coverage and access to healthcare, visit TexasHealth.org/HealthcareReform and click on “Healthcare Leadership Council.”

For our faith-based family of hospitals — Texas Health Presbyterian, Texas Health Harris Methodist and Texas Health Arlington Memorial — I’m Doug Hawthorne.

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