The presence of coverage is a more accurate risk factor than ethnicity.
According to researchers at Johns Hopkins who performed a study on the medical outcomes at a number of Maryland hospitals, the presence of health insurance was a more accurate predictor of whether or not an individual would survive a stroke or heart attack than his or her ethnicity.
The research showed that uninsured individuals had a greater likelihood of dying after these events.
The Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health researchers found that individuals that did not have health insurance were more likely to die in the hospital, even after socioeconomic and ethnic factors had been taken into account.
A lack or inadequate amount of health insurance significantly reduced the chances of survival.
According to the lead author of the study, Derek Ng, a department of epidemiology graduate student “African Americans living in poor, urban neighborhoods bear a high burden of illnesses and early death, from cardiovascular disease in particular.” However, he also pointed out that “Our findings suggested that a lack of health insurance, or being under-insured, is a major cause of insufficient treatment and subsequent premature death.”
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The results of the study were published in a report in the Journal of General Internal Medicine’s online edition. These outcomes were based on an examination of the data from 13,000 patients that had been seen by three hospitals in Maryland that treat patients of all levels of income. Those who did not have insurance had a risk of early death following a heart attack that was 31 percent greater, and a 50 percent greater risk of death following atherosclerosis than those who were privately insured.
The researchers indicated that as a growing number of people obtain health insurance under the new federal healthcare reforms in order to comply with the Affordable Care Act, it will be important to look into the elements that can explain the differences in survival rates. A closer examination of these factors will be very important to helping to make sure that patients are receiving the best possible care and have the highest survival rate.