The survey, “Impact of the Economic Crisis on Health Care Consumers,” found that of the roughly 3,500 American adults polled, nearly one in 10 were more likely as a result of the reported economic crisis to either drop their health insurance plan or switch to a plan with lower premiums and less attractive benefits, according to a press release.
Respondents making less than $25,000 per year were 10 times more likely to consider dropping their health insurance plan to save money than those making more than $100,000, the survey found. Young adults (ages 18-24) were also more likely than other age groups to report being inclined to drop coverage or switch to a less expensive health care plan.
Hispanics reported being more likely than Caucasians, African-Americans, or Asians to want to take drastic measures on health care due to cost.
“While Americans are looking at many ways to curb their expenses, this survey reveals for the first time that they are considering cutting back health care services and benefits as a result of the economic conditions. And, if a portion of those considering these extreme steps actually take action, the issues we face with uninsured and underinsured Americans will only be exacerbated – there could be a real negative impact on the overall health of Americans in the year to come,” said John Distefano, vice president of health care payer services for BearingPoint, in the press release.
The survey also found 15% of respondents were more likely to take less medication, delay prescription refills, or not fill prescriptions as a result of the state of the economy. Women reported being more likely to put off necessary care for themselves or their children, at twice the rate as men.