The percent of males without insurance ranges from 40% in the 65+ population to 58% in the 18-25 age range. Yes, that is a disconcerting difference since males are roughly 50% of the population. However compare that with the single population: 47% to 100% of the uninsured are single, depending on age group whereas they make up 1% to 26% of the population! That’s a huge difference – at least 40 percentage points. So, why doesn’t the headline read “more singles to benefit”? The IWPR fact sheet does report on this larger gap, too, but it doesn’t make the headline despite the so much larger gap!
Today, I received a fact sheet from the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, an organization I support and respect. The fact sheet is called “More Men to Benefit from Expanded Coverage Under Healthcare Reform.” Because of my training and experience in data analysis, the first thing I looked at was Table 1. And I was puzzled. There didn’t seem to be a big difference between men and women. The big difference that jumped out at me was between married and single people of either gender. The table contains raw numbers (use the link to the PDF above to see it). I don’t find raw numbers particularly useful when trying to determine patterns. A large number out of a slightly larger number is different from a large number out of a huge number – proportions matter. So I converted the table into percentages.