Children with private health insurance are still more likely to get their prescriptions filled, regardless of cost concerns, than other U.S. residents, but the situation is getting better for most other demographic groups and worse for privately insured children.
Ellyn Boukus and Emily Carrier, researchers at the Center for Studying Health System Change (HSC), Washington, have published data supporting that conclusion in a prescription drug access paper.
Boukus and Carrier based on the paper on an analysis of data from 2010 and 2007 HSC telephone surveys. The sample included about 18,000 U.S. residents in 2007 and 17,000 in in 2010.
The researchers estimated the unmet need for prescription drugs by having poll staffers ask the following question: “During the past 12 months, was there any time you needed prescription medicines but didn’t get them because you couldn’t afford it?”
The recession rolled in starting in 2007, but Walmart started offering many generic prescriptions for $4 each in May 2006 and greatly expanded the program in 2007. Many competitors followed suit.