The congressionally-created Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission (MACPAC), just completed an issue brief — Access in Brief: Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs—which compares the characteristics of children and youth with special health care needs to those without special health care needs, and service use and barriers to care by type of health coverage. Using 2016 National Survey of Children’s Health data, the Commission found that, in 2016, children and youth with special health care needs:
- were more likely to have Medicaid coverage than children and youth without special health care needs;
- differed with regard to use of services depending on whether they had Medicaid, private coverage, or were uninsured (e.g., although most children and youth with special health care needs who had Medicaid coverage reported a medical visit in the past year, these rates were lower than those with private coverage, but higher than those who were uninsured); and
- reported higher rates of unmet need if they had Medicaid coverage than if they had private coverage, although the children with Medicaid were more likely to report that the program covered benefits and services to meet their needs compared to their privately insured counterparts.