Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Low-income uninsured U.S. adults less likely to have chronic conditions compared with medicaid enrollees

Date:
June 23, 2013
Source:
American Medical Association (AMA)
Summary:
Compared with adults already enrolled in Medicaid, low-income uninsured adults who may be eligible for Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act were less likely to have chronic conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, and hypercholesterolemia, although those with 1 of these conditions were less likely to be aware they had it or to have the disease controlled, according to a new study.

Compared with adults already enrolled in Medicaid, low-income uninsured adults who may be eligible for Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act were less likely to have chronic conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, and hypercholesterolemia, although those with 1 of these conditions were less likely to be aware they had it or to have the disease controlled, according to a study in the June 26 issue of JAMA. The study is being released early to coincide with its presentation at the AcademyHealth annual research meeting.

Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), states have the option to expand Medicaid coverage to most low-income adults, an option that could add millions of new Medicaid enrollees. "In states choosing to implement the expansion, with full federal financing from 2014 through 2016, this would expand Medicaid's traditional focus away from low-income pregnant women and children, very-low-income parents, and the severely disabled to new population groups. These include childless adults and parents whose incomes are too high to qualify for Medicaid under current state eligibility criteria. This is likely to affect the type of Medicaid patients seen by physicians in states choosing to expand Medicaid. State decisions regarding Medicaid expansion will likely consider the anticipated costs and health benefits to their populations," according to background information in the article. "Uncertainty exists regarding the scope of medical services required for new enrollees."

Sandra L. Decker, Ph.D., of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Hyattsville, Md., and colleagues conducted a study to document the health care needs and health risks of uninsured adults who could gain Medicaid coverage under the ACA. Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2007-2010 were used to analyze health conditions among a nationally representative sample of 1,042 uninsured adults 19 through 64 years of age with income no more than 138 percent of the federal poverty level, compared with 471 low-income adults currently enrolled in Medicaid. The 1,042 uninsured respondents correspond to a weighted estimate of 14.7 million uninsured adults who could be eligible for Medicaid coverage under the ACA based on 2007-2010 demographic characteristics. The primary measured outcomes were prevalence and control of diabetes, hypertension, and hypercholesterolemia based on examinations and laboratory tests; measures of self-reported health status including medical conditions; and risk factors such as obesity status.

The researchers found that compared with those enrolled in Medicaid, the uninsured adults reported better overall health; were less likely to be obese and sedentary; less likely to report a physical, mental, or emotional limitation; and much less likely (by 15.1 percentage points) to have multiple health conditions.

Although the uninsured adults were less likely than those enrolled in Medicaid to have diabetes, hypertension, or hypercholesterolemia (30.1 percent compared with 38.6 percent), if they had 1 of these conditions, the conditions were more likely to be undiagnosed or uncontrolled. An estimated 80.1 percent of the uninsured adults with 1 or more of these 3 conditions had at least 1 uncontrolled condition, compared with 63.4 percent of those enrolled in Medicaid.

The weighted counts corresponding to the prevalence estimates translate to approximately 1.4 million uninsured adults potentially eligible for Medicaid with at least 1 condition undiagnosed and 3.5 million with at least 1 condition uncontrolled, compared with approximately 0.6 million and 1.4 million, respectively, among those currently enrolled in Medicaid.

"One-third of potential new Medicaid enrollees are obese, half currently smoke, one-fourth report a functional limitation, and one-fourth report their health as fair or poor -- all factors that could require attention from clinicians. If Medicaid uptake is low, the uninsured adults who do enroll in Medicaid may be disproportionately drawn from those with more health problems than average among those made newly eligible. Because many of the uninsured adults have not seen a physician in the past year and do not have a place they usually go for routine health care, they are likely to need care on first enrolling in Medicaid," the authors write.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Medical Association (AMA). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Sandra L. Decker et al. Health Status, Risk Factors, and Medical Conditions Among Persons Enrolled in Medicaid vs Uninsured Low-Income Adults Potentially Eligible for Medicaid Under the Affordable Care ActHealth of Uninsured Adults Eligible for Medicaid. JAMA, 2013; 1 DOI: 10.1001/jama.2013.7106

Cite This Page:

American Medical Association (AMA). "Low-income uninsured U.S. adults less likely to have chronic conditions compared with medicaid enrollees." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 June 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130623144930.htm>.
American Medical Association (AMA). (2013, June 23). Low-income uninsured U.S. adults less likely to have chronic conditions compared with medicaid enrollees. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130623144930.htm
American Medical Association (AMA). "Low-income uninsured U.S. adults less likely to have chronic conditions compared with medicaid enrollees." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130623144930.htm (accessed September 17, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) President Obama is expected to send 3,000 troops to West Africa as part of the effort to contain Ebola's spread. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama Orders Military Response to Ebola

Obama Orders Military Response to Ebola

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) Calling the Ebola outbreak in West Africa a potential threat to global security, President Barack Obama is ordering 3,000 U.S. military personnel to the stricken region amid worries that the outbreak is spiraling out of control. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
UN: 20,000 Could Be Infected With Ebola by Year End

UN: 20,000 Could Be Infected With Ebola by Year End

AFP (Sep. 16, 2014) Nearly $1.0 billion dollars is needed to fight the Ebola outbreak raging in west Africa, the United Nations say, warning that 20,000 could be infected by year end. Duration: 00:40 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: Ebola Outbreak Threat to Global Security

Obama: Ebola Outbreak Threat to Global Security

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) President Obama is ordering U.S. military personnel to West Africa to deal with the Ebola outbreak, which is he calls a potential threat to global security. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile: iPhone Android Web
    Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins