The data show California has been creeping towards a 20 percent uninsured rate over the past few years.
That places the state among the top ten most uninsured in the nation.
Anthony Wright is with the group Health Access.
WRIGHT: "By having one in five people who are not
covered and not able to pay if they do have an emergency sends
those families to collections and bankruptcy but it also puts the
hospitals and the emergency rooms under financial strain. So having
a number this high is a lose-lose
The rates of uninsured are similar in many of the nation's southern states.
One in four Texans go without health coverage.
Wright says he expects federal health reform to bring these rates down in California - but that means waiting until the year 2014.