223604 Examining state-level variations in health insurance coverage, 2005-2006

Monday, November 8, 2010 : 9:00 AM - 9:15 AM

Andrea M. Brace, MS, CHES , Department of Health Promotion and Behavior, University of Georgia, Athens, GA
Todd L. Matthews, PhD , Department of Sociology and Criminology, University of West Georgia, Carrollton, GA
This study analyzes the relationship between health characteristics, geographic indicators and percentage uninsured by state for the United States in 2005 and 2006. Health insurance data were obtained from the U.S. Census Bureau Small Area Health Insurance Estimates (SAHIE), which provided information on health insurance coverage at the state level and for the District of Columbia (N=51 per year). These aggregated data included residents ages 65 and younger, and were broken down by race-ethnicity status and relationship to the poverty threshold. Data on health characteristics was compiled from the United Health Foundation's America's Health Rankings website. Health characteristics included self-reported current health status, average number of poor physical health days in past month, premature death rate, and public health funding. Geographic data included state population, Census region and Census division. Data were analyzed using spatial visualization, descriptive statistics, correlation analysis, and analysis of variance. Preliminary analyses reveal that statistically significant differences in percent uninsured for everyone age 65 and under exist across census region and certain census divisions, and that health status, average number of ill days, and premature death rate are highly correlated with percent uninsured across both years. Similar results emerge when examining differences in race-ethnicity and at two times the poverty threshold. Findings indicate that these variables should be taken seriously when examining health insurance disparities. Future research is needed to aid policy makers in addressing these factors contributing to unequal access to health insurance across states.

Learning Areas:
Administration, management, leadership
Other professions or practice related to public health
Provision of health care to the public
Public health administration or related administration
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1. Describe various health insurance disparities across the United States. 2. Identify the most vulnerable areas of health insurance need.

Keywords: Health Insurance, Geographic Information Systems

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a doctoral student at the University of Georgia. I have taken classes in abstract development, various methods classes including GIS, and I have conducted research in both my professional and academic career.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

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