Those of us who don't have health insurance know the financial toll that asthma can take on our lives. But now, newly released data shows that health insurance gaps lead to health gaps in kids with asthma.
An article published in the journal of Ambulatory Pediatrics reports on data analysis that University of Rochester researchers did with information from the National Survey of Children's Health.
They found that 13% of the children who have asthma in the US did not have health insurance at some point during the year studied. That may not sound like much, but it represents 600,000 kids! 2% of those kids had no insurance for the entire year studied.
So what does that mean? Well, being uninsured leads to a lack of consistent medical care, gaps in treatment, and ultimately more asthma attacks. And that leads to even greater financial burdens on both individual families and on the health care system.
At least a third of the children without adequate health insurance had not seen a regular family doctor or pediatrician during the year. Researchers made the point that asthma can't be adequately treated if the doctor is not involved in a child's healthcare.
Every child should have an Asthma Action Plan and most should be taking an inhaled steroid for optimum asthma control. Chances are, if you don't have health insurance that provides for your child, he or she is not getting the care needed to keep asthma from interfering with normal play and an everyday child's lifestyle.
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