Abstract

Barriers to health care access can greatly affect one's health status. Research shows that U.S. adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) have poor health and face barriers such as long waits for appointments. However, whether barriers differ by race and ethnicity has not been examined. We conducted a secondary data analysis using the 2002–2011 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey dataset, and compared perceived barriers of community-living U.S. adults with IDD in three racial and ethnic groups (White, Black, and Latinx). Specifically, we examined the top reasons for not having usual source of care, delaying or foregoing medical care. For Black and Latinx adults with IDD, the most-mentioned reasons for not having usual source of care, delaying or foregoing medical care were “don't like/don't trust doctors,” “don't use doctors,” and “don't know where to get care.” In comparison, the White adults with IDD group's biggest perceived barriers were location and insurance related. All groups cited that being unable to afford care was a top reason for delaying or foregoing care. Policies/interventions to improve health care access in racial/ethnic minorities with IDD must first address the topic of developing trust between patients and the health professions. Insurance and the rising costs of care are also key areas that need attention.

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