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Study finds 3 out of 10 Minnesotans struggled with health care

ST. PAUL - Three out of 10 Minnesotans under the age of 65 struggled with the cost of health care last year, the Minnesota Department of Health reports.

In a release Friday of a survey conducted every two years, the department reported its estimate that 445,000 Minnesotans — 8.2 percent — were without health insurance in 2013. The number included about 80,000 children, the Health Department said.

Those numbers were down from the 2011 survey, when an estimated 490,000 Minnesota residents were without health insurance. That was 9.1 percent of the state’s population.

But the Health Department said the decline was statistically insignificant.

When those surveyed were asked if they experienced financial strain due to health care, 30.8 percent either said health care costs were a financial burden or they had foregone health care because of the cost, or both, the report said.

The report was based on a survey of 11,000 Minnesotans by the Health Department and the University of Minnesota School of Public Health.

The overall rate of uninsured Minnesotans is still higher than the pre-recession rate of 7.2 percent in 2007, the Health Department said.

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
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