By Dawn Godbolt, Ph.D. –
(TriceEdneyWire.com) – Medicaid plays a significant role in providing health care to communities of color and reducing health disparities. People of color tend to be covered by Medicaid at a higher rate than Whites, often because they face structural disadvantages, which result in less access to private health insurance. Examples of these barriers include lower levels of education and higher unemployment rates. Given the fact that minorities also tend to fare worse on health measures than Whites, Medicaid’s role in furnishing healthcare to minorities is invaluable.
Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) cover a large portion of minorities: roughly 28 percent of Black adults and 57 percent of Black children, 25 percent of Hispanic adults and 58 percent of Hispanic children, 33 percent of Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islanders, and 26 percent of American Indian and Alaska Native (AIAN) adults, and 50 percent of AIAN children.