Nonwhites in U.S. less likely to have health insurance

March 21, 1995|By Cox News Service

WASHINGTON -- Nonwhite Americans are twice as likely to lack health insurance as whites, and almost one-third of them say they have little or no choice of where they receive medical care, according to a study released yesterday.

The survey by the Commonwealth Fund, a national philanthropy group involved in health and social policy research, also found that nonwhite adults were 50 percent more likely than white adults to report problems paying for medical care.

The survey was released as Congress is considering cuts in Medicaid for the poor as part of its drive to cut the federal budget deficit.

"If minority Americans already face problems obtaining care, how will they be affected by changes in health care financing and practice that are occurring today and those that are proposed for the future?" asked the Commonwealth Fund's president, Karen Davis.

The fund's survey, conducted last year by Louis Harris and Associates, found that 40 percent of nonwhite adults reported a problem meeting their medical costs, compared with 26 percent of white adults.

The survey found that 31 percent of nonwhite adults did not have insurance, compared to 14 percent of white adults.

The survey's margin of error was 2 percentage points.

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