Prospects for a Reduction in the Number of Uninsured Americans

Recent news accounts about the number of Americans who lack health insurance coverage have undoubtedly created confusion about the seriousness and persistence of this problem. Because the most recent figures show a decline in the number of Americans who are uninsured, some people may be led to believe that the problem is diminishing and that we can look forward to continued progress. A major purpose of this paper is to look at the evidence to try to determine whether the problem of the uninsured is correcting itself and is likely to be solved through the normal operations of the economy, or whether a solution requires significant policy changes.