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Health Aff (Millwood). 1995 Fall;14(3):139-46.

Ability to obtain health care: recent estimates from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation National Access to Care Survey.

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  • 1Center for Health Affairs, Project HOPE, Bethesda, MD, USA.


This DataWatch presents findings on Americans' ability to obtain health care. Data from the 1994 National Access to Care Survey sponsored by The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation suggest that earlier studies have underestimated the access problems facing Americans by not asking about supplementary services such as prescription drugs, eyeglasses, dental care, and mental health care or counseling. Using this more inclusive definition of health care needs, we estimate that 16.1 percent of Americans were unable to obtain at least one service they believed they needed. While income is highly correlated with unmet need, most persons reporting access problems are not poor.

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