Using eligibility rules in place as of July 2000, 57 percent of uninsured children were eligible for Medicaid and an additional 26 percent were eligible for SCHIP. Only 23 percent of uninsured children were not eligible for public health insurance coverage. Among low-income uninsured children, only 16 percent were not eligible for Medicaid or SCHIP. The authors conclude that lack of eligibility for public health insurance coverage is no longer the reason for uninsurance for most children. The challenge for policymakers is to focus on eliminating other barriers to enrollment for the millions of eligible but uninsured children. The analysis is based on the National Survey of America's Families and a detailed Medicaid and SCHIP eligibility model.
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