Journal:Disability and Health Journal
Year, Volume, Issue, Page(s):14, , ,
Study examined the effect of physical disability on disparities in access to health care, identified factors associated with unmet health care needs, and analyzed trends in access to care among working-age adults with and without physical disabilities. The three measures of access to care investigated were medical needs, dental needs, and prescription medication needs. A logistic regression analysis was conducted of a nationally representative sample of 163,220 adults aged 25 to 64 years, with and without physical disabilities, using pooled data from the 2002-2011 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey. Results indicated that individuals with physical disabilities have 75, 57, and 85 percent higher odds of having unmet medical, dental, and prescription medication needs, respectively, than those without physical disabilities. Sociodemographic and health factors were related to unmet needs in all three measures of access to care. In particular, being female, living at or near the poverty level, and lacking health insurance increased the odds of unmet health care needs. Predicted probabilities of unmet health care needs from 2002 to 2011 showed persistent gaps between individuals with and without physical disabilities, with a growing gap in unmet dental care.