Out-of-Pocket Healthcare Expenditure Burdens Among Nonelderly Adults With Hypertension | Page 4
Published Online: May 21, 2014
Didem Minbay Bernard, PhD; Patrik Johansson, MD, MPH; and Zhengyi Fang, MS
Hypertension represents the most common reason for office visits to primary care physicians.32-34 However, recent studies show that 80% of physicians are unaware of medication costs and also misunderstand the complexities of insurance coverage.35,36 Thus, raising awareness among providers regarding the prevalence of high out-of-pocket burdens and self-perceived financial barriers to care may encourage providers to discuss healthcare coverage and associated costs with their patients. To the extent that patients’ perceptions about their ability to pay are incorrect, physicians can change those perceptions. Furthermore, health plans could reduce patient cost sharing on drugs for which there is a strong body of evidence documenting cost-saving treatment such as antihypertensive medication. Addressing financial barriers to care may improve treatment adherence among patients with hypertension.
Author Affiliations: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality— Center for Financing, Access and Cost Trends, Rockville, MD (DMB); University of Nebraska Medical Center, College of Public Health, Omaha, NE (PJ); Social & Scientific Systems, Silver Spring, MD (ZF).
Source of Funding: None reported.
Author Disclosures: The authors report no relationship or financial interest with any entity that would pose a conflict of interest with the subject matter of this article.
Authorship Information: Concept and design (DMB, PJ); acquisition of data (DMB, ZF); analysis and interpretation of data (DMB, PJ, ZF); drafting of the manuscript (DMB, PJ); critical revision of the manuscript for important intellectual content (DMB); statistical analysis (ZF).
Address correspondence to: Didem Minbay Bernard, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, 540 Gaither Rd, Rockville, MD 20850. E-mail: Didem.Bernard@ahrq.hhs.gov.
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