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Financial burdens and barriers to care among nonelderly adults: The role of functional limitations and chronic conditions. - PubMed - NCBI

Financial burdens and barriers to care among nonelderly adults: The role of functional limitations and chronic conditions. - PubMed - NCBI

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Financial Burdens More Likely Among Patients With Functional Limitations and Chronic Conditions: AHRQ Study

A recent AHRQ study found that patients are more likely to face financial burdens if they have functional limitations – meaning they need assistance with activities of daily living – and chronic conditions. Patients with financial burdens are those whose medical spending exceeds 20 percent of family income. Researchers used data from AHRQ’s Medical Expenditure Panel Survey to examine financial burdens among adults ages 19 to 64. They found that, among single adults, financial burdens were more common for those with functional limitations (20 percent) than those without (8 percent). Moreover, among those with functional limitations, those with three or more chronic conditions were twice as likely to have high financial burdens (22 percent) compared with those without chronic conditions (11 percent). Functional limitations and chronic conditions were also strongly associated with financial barriers to care (delaying care or being unable to get care for financial reasons). The authors asserted that functional limitations should not be treated as another chronic condition but instead be used as a separate measure in analyzing health care burdens. The study, “Financial Burdens and Barriers to Care Among Nonelderly Adults: The Role of Functional Limitations and Chronic Conditions,” andabstract appeared in Disability and Health Journal.

 2015 Oct 14. pii: S1936-6574(15)00157-0. doi: 10.1016/j.dhjo.2015.09.003. [Epub ahead of print]

Financial burdens and barriers to care among nonelderly adults: The role of functional limitations and chronicconditions.



People with functional limitations and chronic conditions account for the greatest resource use within the health care system.


To examine financial burdens and barriers to care among nonelderly adults, focusing on the role of functional limitations and chronicconditions.


High financial burden is defined as medical spending exceeding 20 percent of family income. Financial barriers are defined as delayingcare/being unable to get care for financial reasons, and reporting that delaying care/going without was a big problem. Data are from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (2008-2012).


Functional limitations are associated with increased prevalence of financial burdens. Among single adults, the frequency of high burdensis 20.3% for those with functional limitations, versus 7.8% for those without. Among those with functional limitations, those with 3 or more chronicconditions are twice as likely to have high burdens compared to those without chronic conditions (22.2% versus 11.1%, respectively). Similar patterns occur among persons in multi-person families whose members have functional limitations and chronic conditions. Having functionallimitations and chronic conditions is also strongly associated with financial barriers to care: 40.2% among the uninsured, 21.9% among those with public coverage, and 13.6% among those with private group insurance were unable to get care.


Functional limitations and chronic conditions are associated with increased prevalence of burdens and financial barriers in all insurance categories, with the exception that an association between functional limitations and the prevalence of burdens was not observed for public coverage.
Published by Elsevier Inc.


Chronic conditionsFinancial barriers to careFinancial burdensFunctional limitations

[PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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