18% of those 50-64 Avoid Medical Care or Filling Prescriptions Due to Cost

“…Avoidance of Medical Care and Association With Health Insurance Affordability Concerns

Approximately 13.2% (95% CI, 11.2%-15.5%) of respondents said that they did not get medical care in the past year because of cost (Table 2). In addition, 11.9% (95% CI, 9.9%-14.1%) reported not filling a prescription medication because of cost concerns. Overall, 18.2% (95% CI, 15.9%-20.8%) of respondents avoided either medical care or filling a prescription because of cost concerns. Respondents who were retired or not working at the time of the survey were more likely than those who were still working to report avoiding filling a prescription (16.1% [95% CI, 12.3%-20.8%] vs 9.6% [95% CI, 7.6%-12.2%]) but not avoiding medical care (12.1% [95% CI, 8.9%-16.2%] vs 13.9% [95% CI, 11.4%-16.7%]) (Table 2).

After adjusting for demographic and health characteristics, individuals with low confidence in health insurance affordability during either the next year or retirement were significantly more likely to avoid medical care because of cost concerns (adjusted odds ratio, 2.89; 95% CI, 1.86-4.49; P < .001) (Table 3). Individuals with health insurance affordability concerns were also more likely to avoid filling a prescription medication (adjusted odds ratio, 2.87; 95% CI, 1.71-4.80; P < .001). Overall, adults aged 50 to 64 years with low confidence in health insurance affordability had 3 times the odds of either avoiding medical care or avoiding filling a prescription due to cost concerns (adjusted odds ratio, 3.00; 95% CI, 2.00-4.50; P < .001). …”

Tipirneni R, Solway E, Malani P, et al. Health Insurance Affordability Concerns and Health Care Avoidance Among US Adults Approaching Retirement. JAMA Netw Open. 2020;3(2):e1920647.

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