- The uninsured rate in Texas was 7% in 2018 (about 5 million people).
- Texas’s unemployment rate jumped from 5.1% in March to 13% in May on a seasonally adjusted basis, which likely has severed millions of Texans from their employer sponsored insurance. The unemployment rate was 8.6% in June after the state lifted its stay at home restrictions.
- As of July 30, 2020, a disproportionate number of individuals dying in Texas are Hispanic or Black. Hispanic Texans account for 48% of COVID deaths, but make up about 40% of the state’s population. Black Texans account for 14% of deaths, but 12% of the state’s population.
- Access to health care in rural areas has only become more challenging during the pandemic and will likely have lasting impacts on rural communities. During the June-July surge in cases, some rural Texas counties have experienced greater increases in infection rates than those experienced in urban counties.
- Seniors are at greatest risk. As of June 30th, 682 nursing homes and 267 assisted living facilities had confirmed residents or staff as having COVID-19.
The COVID-19 pandemic has illuminated the need for practical solutions that address both the immediate challenges and the long-term gaps in our health care systems to ensure Texans can access quality health care they can afford.
Key Messages for Candidates:
- Acknowledge the moment: “Our country is at a pivotal moment. The pandemic, economic recession, and national discussion on race have created a renewed call for action. They have also magnified the critical problems that exist in our health care system.”
- Take an active stance: “It is long past time to examine our systems and address gaps that have existed for decades. We must find solutions and common ground to build a health care system that serves everyone.”
- Commit to prioritizing people’s needs: “I will put people’s health care needs first and I’m already formalizing the ways I gather input and work with community and business leaders to put effective solutions in place.”
- Commit to addressing disparities and finding common ground: “The health care system, as it’s currently structured, isn’t working for far too many. I will work to address the lack of fairness and shared needs to build a health care system that works for all of us.”
Health Care During the COVID Pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic has illuminated the need for effective solutions that address both the immediate challenges and the long-term gaps in our health care systems to ensure people can access quality health care they can afford. In the wake of COVID, policymakers have a critical opportunity to enact solutions to meet their constituents’ short- and long-term health care needs. The 2020 Health Care Legislative Candidate Guide provides candidates with public opinion data, state-specific health care information, key messages and ideas for your health care platform.
For more information or to seek assistance, contact USofCare at [email protected].