250592 Unmet needs and delayed healthcare: Healthcare costs and coverage

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Chia-Ching Chen, MA, MS, EdD, CHES , Department of Epidemiology & Community Health, New York Medical College School of Health Sciences & Practice, Valhalla, NY
Tetsuji Yamada, PhD , Department of Economics, Rutgers University, the State University of New Jersey, Camden, NJ
Objectives: Access disparity for unmet needs and delayed care is a relatively complex health policy measure. Study investigated enabling, predisposing, and reinforcing factors that may influence unmet needs and delayed healthcare and examine the costs of patients and patients' utilization of healthcare services.

Significance: Limited studies have been conducted that focus on behavioral aspects of health inequality and availability of healthcare services regarding healthcare costs for the elderly in the United States. The factors are important concerns in today's society for improving the accessibility of healthcare services to maintain quality of life.

Methodology: 6,653 respondents (age 65 and older) from the 2003-2004 Community Tracking Study Household Survey were examined. A set of regression analyses on the healthcare seeking behaviors in the context of multivariable modeling framework were performed. The log likelihood ratio chi-square and the Hosmer-Lemeshow goodness of fit measure for healthcare seeking behaviors are examined for model specification.

Findings/Results: Affordability of prescribed medicines and out-of-pocket medical costs play a major role on general perceived unmet needs and delayed healthcare. An increase in total family income shows clear-cut negative influences on generally perceived delayed healthcare. As an individual's satisfaction with healthcare services and physicians decline, the self-reported perceived unmet needs and delayed healthcare rise significantly. Individuals who trust in physicians have fewer unmet needs and delayed healthcare.

Conclusions/Recommendations: Access disparity for unmet needs and delayed care is a relatively complex health policy measure. This study provides insights into the determinants of healthcare disparities, especially patients' out-of-pocket costs..

Learning Areas:
Chronic disease management and prevention
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Describe the strategies to mitigate and reduce the economic burden recommended to address healthcare disparities.

Keywords: Health Care Utilization, Aging

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to be an abstract Author on the content I am responsible for because I conduct the study.
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.