Demands On Social Services Skyrocket During Recession

State-run welfare programs have seen their caseloads skyrocket since the economy tanked.

According to the Nevada Division of Welfare and Supportive Services, there were 279,840 Medicaid recipients statewide in fiscal 2011, compared to only 167,795 in fiscal 2007 before the economy soured. That's a 66.8 percent increase. In fiscal 2011, there were 104.5 Medicaid recipients per 1,000 residents, compared to only 62.9 recipients per 1,000 in fiscal 2007. Caseloads rose 6.3 percent in fiscal 2008, 10.5 percent in fiscal 2009, 22.1 percent in fiscal 2010 and 16.3 percent in fiscal 2011.

Medicare caseloads, relatively flat in the middle part of the last decade, rose 60 percent from 12,525 in fiscal 2006 to 20,048 in fiscal 2011.

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, which provides food assistance, had 321,753 recipients in fiscal 2011, a 169 percent increase over the 119,596 recipients in fiscal 2007. There were 120 program participants per 1,000 residents in fiscal 2011 (12 percent of the state population) versus 44.7 recipients per 1,000 in fiscal 2007 (4.5 percent of the population). T

he Child Health Assurance Program, which provides Medicaid to children and pregnant women, had 79,215 recipients in fiscal 2011, 176.3 percent more than the 28,674 served in fiscal 2007.


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