OSU Study Finds Care Disparities For Kids And Seniors With Developmental Disabilities

Sep 14, 2017


An Ohio State University study finds children and older adults with developmental disabilities are experiencing disparities when it comes to health care.

Mike Foley reports.

Researchers with the Wexner Medical Center’s Nisonger Center found gaps in health care quality and access to care for individuals with developmental disabilities. Among children up to the age of 18, 14% reported problems receiving care, compared to 2% of children without disabilities. Half of the older adults with developmental disabilities in the study reported one or more unmet health care needs, compared to 17% without disabilities. Adults with developmental disabilities were less likely to have a primary care physician who spends enough time with them – and older adults were less likely to have a clinician who explained things well. Researchers say the findings highlight the importance of disability competency in health care. They’re also urging medical schools to incorporate specific training in developmental disabilities into their curriculum. The study included more than 50,000 telephone surveys and data from the 2015 Ohio Medicaid Assessment. It’s published online in the Annals of Family Medicine.