Quality of medical care depends on where health insurance comes from

Studies highlight the difference between public and private insurance coverage

emergency health insurance medical technologyCancer patients receiving coverage through the federal Medicaid program may not be receiving quality medical care, according to three recent studies. The studies highlight the medical care that patients with different forms of cancer receive from the doctors associated with their Medicare networks. Notably, the studies found that those receiving coverage through the private market receive a higher quality of care than those on Medicaid. The studies were presented to the American Society of Clinical Oncology during an annual meeting that was recently held in Chicago.

Early detection and treatment is more likely with private insurance coverage

The first study comes from researchers from the University of Tennessee and is focused on Hodgkin lymphoma. The study found that doctors were more likely to detect this type of cancer in its early stages if their patients were insured through the private market. Approximately 59% of those with private insurance coverage were diagnosed before the cancer had a change to progress to later stages, with 50% of patients with Medicaid receiving an early diagnosis. The study found that those with private insurance were more likely to survive as well.

Patients receive diagnoses more quickly with private coverage

The second study comes from the Case Western Reserve School of Medicine in Ohio. This study found  that those with late-stage melanoma were significantly more likely to receive a diagnosis if they had Medicaid coverage. Those with private insurance coverage were more likely to receive an early diagnosis, which would allow them to receive medical care more quickly. The final study had similar results, with more patients receiving examinations for breast cancer if they had private insurance coverage than those that had Medicaid.

Cost of private insurance coverage may be worth it

The Affordable Care Act has ensured that more people have access to Medicaid coverage than ever before. The federal program is meant to serve as an affordable option for health insurance coverage, but the private market may be the best place to  find the policies that offer the best benefits. While private coverage may be expensive, its benefits may outweigh its drawbacks.

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