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Income Disparities in Asthma Burden and Care in California

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Publication Date: December 2010

Publisher(s): UCLA Center for Health Policy Research

Author(s): Ying-Ying Meng; Joelle Wolstein; Susan H. Babey

Series:

Special Collection:

Topic: Health (Health services for low income people)
Health (Health services for the chronically ill)
Health (Health services for minorities)

Keywords: asthma ; chronic illness; low-income

Type: Report

Coverage: California

Abstract:

Although asthma occurs among Californians at all socio-economic levels, it disproportionately affects low-income Californians, who miss more days of work and school, are more likely to have frequent asthma symptoms, and are more likely to go to the emergency department or be hospitalized for asthma care. In this report, the burden of asthma on low-income Californians is examined by geography, race/ethnicity, age and access to care, among other factors. The authors suggest that disparities in asthma prevalence and care are likely due to a number of factors including inadequate access to health insurance coverage, lack of continuity and quality of health care, and an increased likelihood of exposure to asthma triggers and they point to policy and environmental changes that will likely help address these disparities, including adequate health care coverage, quality health care for low-income Californians with asthma, and asthma-friendly environments.