Insurance Status Among Adults With Hypertension—The Impact of Underinsurance
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Insurance Status Among Adults With Hypertension—The Impact of Underinsurance

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  • Alternative Title:
    J Am Heart Assoc
  • Description:

    Hypertension is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke. Health insurance coverage affects hypertension treatment and control, but limited information is available for US adults with hypertension who are classified as underinsured.

    Methods and Results

    Using Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System 2013 data, we identified adults with self‐reported hypertension. On the basis of self‐reported health insurance status and health care–related financial burdens, participants were categorized as uninsured, underinsured, or adequately insured. Proxies for health care received included whether they reported taking antihypertensive medications and whether they visited a doctor for a routine checkup in the past year. We assessed the association between health insurance status and health care received, adjusting for selected sociodemographic characteristics. Among 123 257 participants from 38 states and District of Columbia with self‐reported hypertension, 12% were uninsured, 26% were underinsured, and 62% were adequately insured. In adjusted models using adequately insured participants as referent, both uninsured (adjusted odds ratio, 0.39; 95% CI, 0.35–0.43) and underinsured (0.83, 0.76–0.89) participants were less likely to report using antihypertensive medication than those of adequately insured participants. Similarly, adjusted odds ratio of visiting a doctor for routine checkup in the past year were 0.25 (0.23–0.28) for those who were uninsured and 0.78 (0.72–0.84) for those who were underinsured compared to those with adequate insurance.


    Uninsured and underinsured participants with hypertension were less likely to report receiving care compared to those with adequate insurance coverage. Disparities in health care coverage may necessitate targeted interventions, even among people with health insurance.

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