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Pathways to Achieve Universal Health Coverage for Children

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The United States has been on the brink of reaching universal health coverage for children, a potential stepping stone to achieving it for the population as a whole. Yet, recent trends in the insurance and policy landscapes have led to rising numbers of uninsured children since 2017, as well as a broader problem of underinsurance for children and families.

Based on our review of the fragmented children’s health insurance market and the barriers to families in accessing coverage, this policy brief presents a menu of options for policymakers to consider to achieve affordable, comprehensive coverage for all children. These span from universal coverage proposals to modifications of existing programs and enrollment/retention processes to fit within the context of communities across the country.

For a full review of the children’s health insurance market and factors contributing to rising uninsurance and underinsurance among children, read our accompanying Evidence to Action brief.

For a full list of references for this resource, click here.


Rubin D, Rosenquist R, McCarthy-Alfano M, Strane D, Glaser A