News Release

Unmet need for physicians, services among US adults

Peer-Reviewed Publication

JAMA Network

Bottom Line: Twenty years of survey data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention were used to examine the unmet need to see a physician and for services among insured and uninsured adults from 1998 to 2017, a time of change in the U.S. health care system that included passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The proportion of adults who reported being unable to see a physician because of cost increased, with worsening access among insured adults whose numbers increased over time. The proportion of adults with chronic medical conditions unable to see a physician because of cost also increased for most conditions. A bigger share of adults received guideline-recommended cholesterol tests and flu shots but the proportion of women receiving mammograms decreased. A limitation of the study was the use of self-reported data.

To access the embargoed study: Visit our For The Media website at this link

Authors: Laura Hawks, M.D., Cambridge Health Alliance, Cambridge, Massachusetts, and coauthors.


Editor's Note: The article includes conflict of interest and funding/support disclosures. Please see the article for additional information, including other authors, author contributions and affiliations, financial disclosures, funding and support, etc.


Media Advisory: To contact corresponding author Laura Hawks, M.D., email David Cecere at The full study and commentary are linked to this news release.

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