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Louisiana Special Report on Health Access Disparities

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A report sponsored by the Louisiana Department of Health focuses on differences in access to healthcare in Louisiana across demographic groups and plans. This report examined disparities based on data from 8,538 Louisiana households surveyed in the Louisiana Health Insurance Survey.

The report focused on one question asking whether health insurance coverage meets needs and another asking whether the coverage gives people access to the providers they need. Both questions generally lead to very similar conclusions about the quality of coverage and disparities.

Results indicate that children generally have better health insurance than adults both in terms of
meeting needs and access to providers. The results found no gender disparities for children, but do suggest female adults in Louisiana have better health insurance coverage than males. Results indicate racial disparities in that white Louisianans report better coverage than Black citizens and other races report still a lower probability that coverage meets needs and provides access to the providers that they need. In terms of location, rural children are more likely to report less access and coverage not meeting needs than their urban counterparts.

With regard to insurance plan, the responses of the uninsured were included in the analysis and interpreted responses as general information on access to healthcare. The majority of uninsured children and adults report never having coverage that meets needs or access to the providers they need. All plans perform similarly with Medicaid rated highest for children and employer-sponsored coverage rated highest for adults. Given that the report include the uninsured in their analysis, the results should be interpreted as providing a broad measures of health coverage disparities.

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