Coweta near top in health insurance coverage

A review released by the U.S. Census Bureau showed that Coweta County has the eighth highest percentage residents with health insurance when compared to Georgia’s 159 counties.

The most recent data supplied by the bureau’s Small Area Health Insurance Estimates (SAHIE) showed Coweta County in 2010 with 82.4 percent of its residents with health insurance.

In all, Georgia had 29 counties where 80 percent of more of residents have health insurance. Coming in with the highest percentage of residents with health insurance was Fayette County at 87.2 percent, followed by Forsyth with 85.5 percent, Chattahoochee with 84.9 percent, Harris with 84.3 percent, Columbia with 84.2 percent, Oconee with 83.8 percent, Camden with 82.6 percent and Coweta with 82.4 percent.

Statewide, the numbers showed that 78.1 percent of residents have health insurance. The county with the lowest percentage of insured residents was Echols County at 63.7 percent.

A breakdown by age group across the state shows that those under age 19 fare better when it comes to health insurance, with nearly all Georgia counties ranging from 88-93 percent of their youngest citizens insured. The age data did not account for persons over age 65 due to Medicare coverage.

So how do Coweta County and Georgia compare to the rest of the United States when it comes to residents having health insurance? The answer is, not so well. With 78.1 percent of its residents insured, Georgia ranks near the bottom of the list, with only New Mexico (77.4 percent), Nevada (74.9 percent), Florida (74.7 percent) and Texas (73.7 percent) having fewer residents with health insurance.

So what about the other states? Topping the list was Massachusetts at 94.8 percent, followed by Hawaii at 91.1 percent, Vermont at 90.3 percent, Connecticut at 89.6 percent, Iowa at 89.3 percent and Wisconsin at 89.2 percent.

Nationwide, the Census Bureau estimated that 83.7 percent of U.S. residents had health insurance in 2010.