Insurance Status and Quality of Care for Children in Rural Areas: 1993-2000

Research center:
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Project completed:
August 2003

Childhood immunizations are accepted as a marker for the quality of healthcare that children receive, and all states now have childhood immunization laws that affect children entering school. While childhood immunization rates are already high in most parts of the country, there are still children who are at risk for not receiving timely immunizations. Being non-white and having parents with lower income or lower educational status increases a child's risk of being under-immunized. Several interventions have been put in place to try and increase immunization rates. For example, the Vaccine for Children program, passed in 1993, provides free immunizations to all eligible children born in the United States. Federal programs that provide free vaccinations may have differential effects on the provision of immunizations in rural and urban areas. This study examines the impact of insurance coverage and having a medical home on receipt of childhood immunizations for rural and urban children during the years 1993 - 2000. In addition, it will examine the impact of poverty, race and Hispanic origin on rural and urban children s receipt of childhood immunizations. Analysis will be based on National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) information from the years 1993 - 2000.