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Experiences of families that applied for government-sponsored child health insurance: report of a follow-up study in New York City

Experiences of families that applied for government-sponsored child health insurance: report of a follow-up study in New York City

Journal of Urban Health 76(3): 335-350

This study followed up on a summer 1997 advocacy project by the Children's Defense Fund--New York, which assisted families in New York City in enrolling their children in government-sponsored health insurance programs (Medicaid and Child Health Plus). To determine how many participants from the 1997 project acquired insurance, to document their experiences during the application process, and to solicit their suggestions on improving the application process. Guided telephone interviews in summer 1998 with all families from the 1997 program that could be located. Fifty-five families from New York City that, with the assistance of the Children's Defense Fund--New York, applied for Medicaid or Child Health Plus in summer 1997. Of the 55 families, 46 acquired insurance for their children at some point during the year. A number of families changed insurance status several times during the year, and some insured originally through government-sponsored programs later acquired private insurance. The families experienced many difficulties in dealing with the health insurance bureaucracies. The process of applying for Medicaid and Child Health Plus is more difficult and time consuming than may be realized, and many families may go through the application repeatedly. Current efforts to decrease the number of uninsured children in the US must take into account the bureaucratic barriers faced by families that are eligible for these programs and must consider ways to make the application process less formidable.

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Accession: 049022152

Download citation: RISBibTeXText

PMID: 12607900

DOI: 10.1007/BF02345672

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