Comparing type of health insurance among low-income children: A mixed-methods study from Oregon

Jennifer E. Devoe, Lorraine Wallace, Shelley Selph, Nicholas Westfall, Stephanie Crocker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


We employed a mixed-methods study of primary data from a statewide household survey and in-person interviews with parents to examine-quantitatively and qualitatively-whether low-income children experienced differences between public and private insurance coverage types. We carried out 24 in-depth interviews with a subsample of respondents to Oregon's 2005 Children's Access to Healthcare Study (CAHS), analyzed using a standard iterative process and immersion/crystallization cycles. Qualitative findings guided quantitative analyses of CAHS data that assessed associations between insurance type and parental-reported unmet children's health care needs. Interviewees uniformly reported that stable health insurance was important, but there was no consensus regarding which type was superior. Quantitatively, there were only a few significant differences. Cross-sectionally, compared with private coverage, public coverage was associated with higher odds of unmet specialty care needs (odds ratio [OR] 3.54; 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.52-8.24). Comparing full-year coverage patterns, those with public coverage had lower odds of unmet prescription needs (OR 0.60, 95% CI 0.36-0.99) and unmet mental health counseling needs (OR 0.24, 95% CI 0.10-0.63), compared with privately covered children. Low-income Oregon parents reported few differences in their child's experience with private versus public coverage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1238-1248
Number of pages11
JournalMaternal and child health journal
Issue number8
StatePublished - Nov 2011


  • CHIP
  • Child access to care
  • Child health insurance
  • Health care disparities
  • Health policy
  • Health services research
  • Medicaid

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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