This brief focuses on children’s loss of private health insurance after a parent left his or her job voluntarily or involuntarily between May 2008 and the end of 2012. Author Kristin Smith reports that more than one in four privately insured children had a parent leave employment voluntarily or involuntarily between 2008 and 2012. Within eighteen months after a parent transitioned out of employment, 19 percent of privately insured children lost their private health insurance; of this 19 percent, 11 percent moved to public health insurance and 8 percent became uninsured. Children living in the highest income quintile more often transitioned to no insurance, while children living in the lowest income quintile more often transitioned to public health insurance. Hispanic children were more likely to transition to public health insurance than to become uninsured. Children in rural and urban areas were equally likely to have a parent leave employment; they were also equally likely either to become uninsured or to gain public health insurance.

Publication Date

Spring 5-24-2016


National Issue Brief No.99


Durham, N.H. : Carsey School of Public Policy, University of New Hampshire

Document Type



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