Cannot Afford Healthcare

Cannot Afford Healthcare

What does this measure?

The percentage of adults in a geographic area who could not afford medical care within the past year.

Why is this important?

Access to preventative medical care and treatment for illnesses and chronic conditions is critical for both individual and public health, leading to a higher quality of life and lower long-term health costs. People who lack medical care face worse health outcomes and poor long-term health.

How is our county performing?

In 2017, 10% of Erie County residents had been unable to afford medical care within the past year. This rate was similar to Pennsylvania (10%) and slightly lower than the U.S. (13%) in 2017. Between 2011 and 2017, the county's percentage of people who could not afford medical care declined 3 percentage points. The 2011 to 2017 change at the county level was slightly higher than the decline in the state and U.S. rates between 2013 and 2017. The state and national rates declined between 2013 and 2017, 2 percentage points respectively.

How do we compare to similar counties?

In 2015, the most recent year for which comparison data were available, Erie's percentage of people who could not afford medical care was lower than Luzerne County, PA (13%). In 2014, Erie's percentage was similar to Broome County, NY (12%).

Notes about the data

State- and county-level data are from state health departments. All Erie County data from after 2015 are from the Erie County Department of Health. The data come from a survey designed to collect scientific data on health risks and behaviors.

Beginning in 2011, the Centers for Disease Control made two changes to the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System on which this indicator is based. The survey now includes cell-phone users, and a new statistical method is used to weight responses. Therefore, data prior to 2011 is not displayed.

Cannot Afford Healthcare
United States15%13%12%12%13%
Broome County, NY12%
Erie County, PA13%13%13%12%10%10%
Luzerne County, PA15%14%13%13%16%

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Pennsylvania Department of Health, New York State Department of Health, Erie county Department of Health
Notes: Luzerne county numbers are 3 year average of adjacent years

Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Establishments Maintaining
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Employees Increasing
Tourism Spending Maintaining
Median Age Increasing
Population by Age Not Applicable
Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Total Population Decreasing
Foreign Born Population Increasing
Household Types Not Applicable
Average Household Size Maintaining
Single-Parent Families Increasing
Median Household Income Maintaining
Public Assistance Maintaining
Change in Average Salary Decreasing
Unemployment Rate Increasing
Unemployment Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Employment by Sector Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty Increasing
People Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Children Living in Poverty Increasing
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty by Education Level Not Applicable
Homeownership Rates Decreasing
Homeownership Rate by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Housing Affordability for Homeowners Maintaining
Median Rent Maintaining
Student Performance in Grade 3 Reading Increasing
Student Performance in Grade 3 Math Increasing
High School Cohort Graduation Rate Maintaining
Per Student Spending Maintaining
Prekindergarten Participation Increasing
Education Level of Adults Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Air Quality Increasing
Water Quality Maintaining
Recycling Tons Per Capita Maintaining
Solid Waste Per Capita Maintaining
Vehicles by Fuel Type Not Applicable
Mortality Rate Decreasing
Death from Heart Disease Decreasing
Death from Cancer Decreasing
Death from Stroke Decreasing
Death from Chronic Lower Respiratory Disease Increasing
Hypertension Prevalance Increasing
Diabetes Prevalence Increasing
Asthma Increasing
People Without Healthcare Coverage Decreasing
People Without a Primary Care Physician Increasing
Routine Checkups Increasing
People Who Cannot Afford Healthcare Decreasing
Adults Who are Overweight or Obese Increasing
Children Who are Overweight or Obese Increasing
Teens Who are Overweight or Obese Increasing
Adult Smokers Decreasing
Physically Inactive Adults Decreasing
Binge Drinking Maintaining
Infant Mortality Decreasing
Low Birth Weight Babies Not Applicable
Live Births to Teen Mothers Decreasing
Non Smoking During Pregnancy Increasing
Early Prenatal Care Increasing