Inequities in health services among insured Americans: Do working-age adults have less access to medical care than the elderly? Academic Article uri icon

Overview

MeSH Major

  • Health Services Accessibility
  • Insurance, Health

abstract

  • To determine whether groups other than the elderly and the uninsured have difficulty obtaining access to medical care, we studied 7633 adults nationwide. As we expected, the insured had much greater access than the uninsured, but among the insured there were substantial disparities in access to care. Insured adults of working age were 3.5 times as likely (95 percent confidence interval, 2.7 to 4.4) as the elderly to have needed supportive medical services (including medications and supplies) but not to have received them, and 3.4 times (2.3 to 4.4) as likely to have had major financial difficulties because of illness. Among insured, working-age adults, the poor were 4.4 times (3.5 to 5.3) as likely as those who were not poor to have needed supportive services but not to have received them, and 5.2 times (3.6 to 6.8) as likely to have had major financial problems because of illness. Apart from insurance status and income, blacks were 1.7 times (1.1 to 2.2) as likely as whites to have needed supportive services but not to have received them. Hispanics with a medical illness were 2.2 times (1.3 to 3.2) as likely as whites not to have seen a physician within the past year. We conclude that insured, working-age adults have less access to medical care than the elderly, and that poor, black, or Hispanic persons in this group are at risk for even greater problems with access to care. Current policy strategies are unlikely to improve the ability of these groups to obtain care.

publication date

  • January 1988

Research

keywords

  • Academic Article

Identity

Language

  • eng

PubMed ID

  • 3367961

Additional Document Info

start page

  • 1507

end page

  • 12

volume

  • 318

number

  • 23