Socioeconomic Factors That Affect Health Insurance

Written by regina hamilton
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Socioeconomic Factors That Affect Health Insurance
Access to health care and health-care insurance can be affected by many factors. (doctor image by from

Health insurance policies are not the same. The kind and level of coverage that a person receives can be greatly affected by ethnicity, educational level, job type and location of residence. Increase in health-care costs affect everyone but seem to hit those from lower socioeconomic groups the hardest.

Minority Groups

Ethnic groups and immigrants to the U.S. make up 46 per cent of uninsured people, according to The number is highly disproportionate as these groups make up only 24 per cent of the U.S. population. One reason is that minority groups are more likely to have low-paying jobs that do not offer health insurance. Minorities are more likely to work part-time and temporary positions that make health insurance on the private market difficult to afford.


Health is another factor that can greatly affect health-insurance coverage. Anyone with a pre-existing condition such as heart disease, diabetes, cancer and sometimes even obesity might find getting health insurance coverage very difficult. Insurance companies are profitmaking businesses and policy holders with pre-existing medical conditions pose too great of a risk. Anyone with a pre-existing medical condition is still eligible for employment-based medical insurance. Some insurance companies will sell policies insuring those with pre-existing conditions up to a certain dollar amount.


The type of job a person has can greatly affect their health-insurance options. There are two basic reasons. Many small-business employers cannot afford to offer health insurance to their workers. With the rising costs of health-care policies, providing coverage to a small work force would prove too costly. The second reason is that some employees that work for small companies receive low pay, or are employed on a part-time basis. They cannot afford to purchase their own health-care policy on the private market. Occupations such as air traffic controller, police officer or firefighter, are usually covered by a government insurance plan. If a person in a high stress or dangerous job has to go on the private market for coverage, it can be prohibitively expensive or difficult to find.

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