Applying the estimate from the Massachusetts study of one additional death for every 840 uninsured people, there would have been 6980 additional deaths in 2010 as a result of the downturn. The cumulative total of additional deaths for the years 2008 through 2012 would be 23,620. If 2013 is similar to 2012 in terms of the number of uninsured, the total additional death count through 2013 would be close to 28,000.
These numbers are obviously crude estimates. Many factors other than insurance will have affected death rates in these years, including other effects of the downturn. But the Massachusetts study gives us a basis for projecting the cost in human lives of the downturn and the prolonged period of high unemployment that followed.