Health coverage without health care : unmet mental health care needs among the publicly insured
Schultz, Sarah Robinson.
Thesis (M.P.P.)--Georgetown University, 2009.; Includes bibliographical references. Too many adults with public insurance have unmet mental health care needs. While efforts at improving health outcomes are often focused on expanding health insurance coverage, these individuals are presumed to have a fairly comprehensive set of health care services covered by insurance. The hypothesis of this study is that individuals who have greater social connections would be more likely to receive treatment. Through those connections, they might have a clearer perception of their health care needs and the potential benefit of seeing or visiting a health care professional. These supports might enable them to overcome barriers to receiving care.; The study verified that a large percentage of the 1.5 million adults with mental health needs and public insurance are not receiving mental health care services. However, counter to the hypothesis, connections through employment or living with a spouse or partner statistically significantly decrease the likelihood of receiving treatment. In contrast, enrollment in public income maintenance programs such as TANF or SSI, increase the likelihood an individual would receive treatment. Connectivity factors appear to have a mixed effect on whether a publicly insured adult with mental health care needs receives treatment. While the study was unable to demonstrate why so many publicly insured adults have unmet mental health care needs, it highlights the need for further research into how we can do better.
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