Chronic Disease Care
Between 1997 and 2006, access to care among uninsured adults living with chronic conditions deteriorated, while access did not change over the same period for those covered by Medicaid or a form of private insurance, according to a study in Health Affairs.
Researchers found that more than one-third of uninsured people with chronic conditions did not receive proper access to care because of cost and that people with health insurance coverage also experienced barriers to care because of rising costs. In addition, jumps in prescription drug costs affected both groups' ability to purchase medications, according to the study authors.
The authors recommend testing health care reform proposals on people living with chronic conditions because they utilize the bulk of health care services and account for almost three-quarters of health care spending in the U.S. (Hoffman/Schwartz, Health Affairs, 7/22).