Health insurance and subjective health status: Data from the 1987 National Medical Expenditure Survey

Peter Franks, C. M. Clancy, M. R. Gold, P. A. Nutting

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

54 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives. The relationship between health insurance and subjective health status was investigated. It was hypothesized that persons without health insurance would have lower levels of subjective health status than those with health insurance and that this relationship would hold for both poor and nonpoor persons. Methods. Data from the 1987 National Medical Expenditure Survey were analyzed to examine the relationship between health insurance and self-reported health status. The analysis controlled for sociodemographic and attitudinal variables and medical conditions. Results. Persons without health insurance had significantly lower levels of subjective health status than did persons with insurance. This adverse effect persisted after adjustments were made for the effects of age, sex, race, income, attitude toward the value of medical care and health insurance, and medical conditions. The detrimental effect of lacking health insurance on subjective health status was present for persons at all income levels and was greater than the effect on subjective health status found for 2 of the 11 reported medical conditions. Conclusions. Lacking health insurance is associated with clinically significant lower levels of subjective health status in both poor and non-poor persons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1295-1299
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican Journal of Public Health
Volume83
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1993
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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