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Uninsured Women
Uninsured Women in Kentucky

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Kentucky Value:


Percentage of women ages 19-44 not covered by private or public health insurance

Kentucky Rank:


Uninsured Women in depth:

Uninsured Women by State

Percentage of women ages 19-44 not covered by private or public health insurance

Uninsured Women Trends

Percentage of women ages 19-44 not covered by private or public health insurance

Trend: Uninsured Women in Kentucky, United States, 2023 Health Of Women And Children Report

Percentage of women ages 19-44 not covered by private or public health insurance

United States

 U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey

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About Uninsured Women

US Value: 11.8%

Top State(s): Massachusetts, Vermont: 2.9%

Bottom State(s): Texas: 25.6%

Definition: Percentage of women ages 19-44 not covered by private or public health insurance

Data Source and Years: U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 2021

Suggested Citation: America's Health Rankings analysis of U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, United Health Foundation,, accessed 2023.

Health insurance is a critical factor in ensuring women receive the preventive and medical care they need to achieve and maintain good health. Compared with insured women, uninsured women have more health challenges, including:

  • Inadequate access to care.
  • Lower quality of care.
  • Unmet need for medical care due to cost.
  • Lower use of recommended preventive services such as mammograms and Pap tests for cancer screening.
  • Poorer health outcomes, such as higher rates of cancer mortality and greater risk of a late-stage cancer diagnosis.

Since the implementation of the Affordable Care Act in 2010, the proportion of women of reproductive age who are uninsured has declined, and their health coverage stability has improved. States that expanded Medicaid showed greater progress in reducing their uninsured population. In 2018, the proportion of uninsured women in states that expanded Medicaid was 8%, compared with 17% in states that did not expand Medicaid.

The uninsured rate is higher among:

  • Single women compared with women in two-parent households.
  • Hispanic and American Indian/Alaska Native women compared with Asian and white women.
  • Low-income women compared with high-income women. 
  • Women living in the United States without U.S. citizenship compared with those with U.S. citizenship.

Common reasons for being uninsured include the cost of insurance, lack of knowledge about eligibility for free or reduced-cost insurance and falling into the coverage gap. It is estimated that 800,000 women of reproductive age were in the Medicaid coverage gap in 2019, meaning their incomes were too high for Medicaid eligibility but still below the poverty level. Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act increases eligibility for nearly everyone in this group, but not all states have adopted the expansion.

Public programs that have been effective at reducing the rate of uninsured women include:

  • Expanding Medicaid: This government-sponsored health insurance program has made significant strides in increasing access to and quality of care for low-income women and those who would otherwise lack coverage. Expansion of Medicaid eligibility will decrease the proportion of uninsured women. 
  • Pregnancy-related Medicaid: Pregnancy care through Medicaid covers maternity care, delivery and postpartum care for 60 days after childbirth, and is available in all 50 states. Women can enroll in pregnancy-related Medicaid at any time during pregnancy, but must meet their state’s income requirements to be eligible. The National Health Law Program provides answers to frequently asked questions regarding eligibility for pregnancy-related Medicaid. States now have the option to expand Medicaid postpartum coverage from 60 days to 12 months through provisions in the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.

Healthy People 2030 has several health insurance-related objectives, including:

  • Increasing the proportion of people with health insurance. 
  • Reducing the proportion of people who can’t get medical care when they need it.

Increasing access to and coverage of high-quality maternal health services is one of five goals in the White House Blueprint for Addressing the Maternal Health Crisis, released in June 2022. The document outlines strategies the federal government should take to improve U.S. maternal and infant health outcomes.  

Gunja, Munira Z., Sara R. Collins, Michelle M. Doty, and Sophie Beautel. “How the Affordable Care Act Has Helped Women Gain Insurance and Improved Their Ability to Get Health Care: Findings from the Commonwealth Fund Biennial Health Insurance Survey, 2016.” Issue Brief. The Commonwealth Fund, August 2017.

Rudowitz, Robin, Patrick Drake, Jennifer Tolbert, and Anthony Damico. “How Many Uninsured Are in the Coverage Gap and How Many Could Be Eligible If All States Adopted the Medicaid Expansion?” Issue Brief. KFF, March 31, 2023.

Salganicoff, Alina, Usha Ranji, Adara Beamesderfer, and Nisha Kurani. “Women and Health Care in the Early Years of the Affordable Care Act: Key Findings from the 2013 Kaiser Women’s Health Survey.” Issue Brief. KFF, May 15, 2014.

Silvestri, Gerard A., Ahmedin Jemal, K. Robin Yabroff, Stacey Fedewa, and Helmneh Sineshaw. “Cancer Outcomes Among Medicare Beneficiaries And Their Younger Uninsured Counterparts: Study Compares Cancer Outcomes among Medicare Beneficiaries and Their Younger Uninsured Counterparts.” Health Affairs 40, no. 5 (May 1, 2021): 754–62.

Solomon, Judith. “Closing the Coverage Gap Would Improve Black Maternal Health.” Washington, D.C.: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, July 26, 2021.

Sugar, Sarah, Joel Ruhter, Sarah Gordon, Amelia Whitman, Christie Peters, Nancy De Lew, and Benjamin D. Sommers. “Health Coverage for Women Under the Affordable Care Act.” Issue Brief No. HP-2022-09. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, March 21, 2022.

Tolbert, Jennifer, Kendal Orgera, Natalie Singer, and Anthony Damico. “Key Facts about the Uninsured Population.” Issue Brief. KFF, December 19, 2022.

“White House Blueprint for Addressing the Maternal Health Crisis.” Washington, D.C.: The White House, June 2022.

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