In 2011, about 12 percent of U.S. adults agreed with the statement: “I’m healthy enough that I really don’t need health insurance.” That same year, slightly more than 24 percent of adults agreed with the statement: “Health insurance is not worth the money it costs.” (Source: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Medical Expenditure Panel Survey Statistical Brief #426: Attitudes toward Health Insurance and Their Persistence over Time, Adults, 2010-2011.)
STATISTICAL BRIEF #426:
Attitudes toward Health Insurance and Their Persistence over Time, Adults, 2010-2011
|Steven B. Cohen, PhD|
- In 2011, 12.1 percent of adults agreed with the statement "I'm healthy enough that I really don't need health insurance," and 24.3 percent of adults agreed with the statement "Health insurance is not worth the money it costs."
- There were no differences in the overall national estimates when comparing the 2011 attitudes towards the cost of health insurance with those observed in 2010; however, substantial shifts in preferences were noted for the same individuals over this time period.
- Adults ages 18-64 who were uninsured for all of 2011 were nearly twice as likely as their privately insured counterparts, and two and one-half times as likely as those with public coverage to indicate they were healthy and did not need health insurance. These uninsured adults were also more likely to agree that health insurance was not worth its cost, relative to those with coverage.
- Adults with consistent attitudes toward health insurance in both 2010 and 2011 had coverage and utilization behaviors in accordance with their expressed preferences. Those who consistently said they were healthy and did not need coverage were more than three times as likely not to have any medical expenditures in both years, relative to those who consistently disagreed with that classification.
- In both years, adults under age 65 who consistently indicated that health insurance was not worth the cost were nearly three times as likely to be uninsured relative to those who consistently disagreed.