CHICAGO (Aug. 19, 2010) — Americans are more inclined to shun medical care during an economic downturn than those living in countries with government-backed health systems, according to a study.
Researchers from Dartmouth College, Princeton and Harvard universities found that Americans reduced their use of routine care because of a loss of money or job by 26.5 percent—much more than their counterparts living in Canada, Great Britain, France and Germany.
In Great Britain and Canada, citizens sought 5.6 percent and 7.6 percent less care, while those living in France and Germany reduced their doctor visits by 12 percent and 10.3 percent respectively. All of those countries have some level of government-backed healthcare.
“We find strong evidence that the economic crisis—manifested in job and wealth losses—has led to reductions in the use of routine medical care,” according to the study.
The survey, conducted in June and July of 2009, included 2,148 participants in the U.S., 1,001 in Great Britain, 1,132 in Canada, 1,097 in France and 1,107 in Germany.
This report appeared in Modern Healthcare magazine, a Chicago-based sister publication of Tire Business.