Rep Alan Grayson (D-FL) has been outspoken (to say the least) about health care reform. He's put up a site, Names of the Dead, on which he asks for stories about people who have died from lack of insurance. While these stories cannot necessarily be verified, this study (PDF) has been.
Scheduled for the December issue, the peer-reviewed article reports on analysis of publicly available data to update statistics from 1993 that demonstrated a 25% higher risk of death for the uninsured when compared with those with health insurance. Now, that figure is up to 40%. Even scarier is that the population that generated the updated stats is younger and followed for fewer years than those from 1993.
Lack of health insurance is associated with as many as 44,789 deaths per year in the United States, more than those caused by kidney disease (42,868).Statistically, this averages out to 100 unnecessary deaths of persons between 18 and 64 years of age per Congressional district in the U.S. So, members of Congress, which 100 constituents are you willing to let die? Would you let terrorists kill 100 people in your district? Think about it.
The increased risk of death attributable to uninsurance
suggests that alternative measures of access to medical care for the uninsured, such as community health centers, do not provide the protection of private health insurance.