KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Fact Check: Do 15,000 People Lose Insurance Every Day?

CNN's Political Ticker blog fact checks a statement made by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on NBC's "Meet the Press" Sunday. Sebelius said that "15,000 people a day lose their insurance." CNN reports that the claim comes from 2008 and 2009 unemployment numbers, but that job losses have slowed since then. "In addition, the administration's economic stimulus bill tried to keep laid-off workers covered by subsidizing insurance payments under the COBRA program, which allows the unemployed to stay on their company's health plan by paying the company's full share." CNN concludes that "[t]he figure Sebelius cited was based on the rapid growth of unemployment at the depths of the recent recession and is most likely out of date. In addition, the administration's own efforts may have helped cut into the numbers of newly uninsured" (Smith, 3/7). This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.