Report paints troubling picture of Nevada's youth in some areas

Report paints troubling picture of Nevada’s youth in some areas

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LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Nevada ranks in last place in the country for children when it comes to accessing medical and dental care. Only 53% of children in Nevada ages 0 to 17 had a visit to both in the last 12 months.

That was among the findings in a new report released Thursday by the Kenny Guinn Center for Policy Priorities. The report “Youth Outcomes in Nevada” focuses on youth from birth to 24 years old. It looks at key information related to employment, health, substance abuse, and education for youth in Nevada who make up 32% of the state’s population.

Nancy Brune, the senior fellow at the Guinn Center, said that the report would serve as a helpful resource for organizations that work with youth. Brune, who is the author of the report, reveals that Nevada’s decision-makers should continue to explore programs based on the evidence presented in order to support youth and help improve outcomes.

“Youth Outcomes in Nevada” revealed that nearly 25% of Nevada’s rural youth and 15% of urban youth between the age of 14 and 18 live in poverty. In 2019, more than 16% of rural and 18% of urban Nevadans between the ages of 19 and 24 lacked health insurance.

Additionally, the youth unemployment rate tends to be higher than that of older adults. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, approximately 10% of Nevada’s workforce between 20 to 24 was unemployed. This was a higher rate than any of other older age group and 6% higher than the statewide average. In 2020, the youth unemployment rate increased to nearly 23%.

The report was funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation “Community Voices for Health” project. This project seeks to improve health outcomes for community members.

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