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Nearly 650,000 San Diegans Uninsured in 2009

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Aired 8/23/10

A new report estimates the number of uninsured Californians grew in every county in the state last year. Nearly 650,000 people in San Diego County lacked health coverage in 2009.

— A new report estimates the number of uninsured Californians grew in every county in the state last year. Nearly 650,000 people in San Diego County lacked health coverage in 2009.

The UCLA Center for Health Policy Research wrote the report. It says the rising number of uninsured was due to a sharp increase in unemployment, and a loss of job-based coverage.

Lead researcher Shana Alex Lavarreda says Californians throughout the state felt the pain.

"We were surprised at how widespread the insurance loss was," Alex Lavarreda says. "That it ranged all the way from Imperial County, you know in Southern California, up through the Central Valley, and then all the way up in the Northern Sierra Counties. They were all hit hard."

The report shows 56 percent of San Diegans had employer-provided health insurance last year. Nearly 23 percent had no coverage at all.

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