Understanding adolescent and young adult use of family physician services: a cross-sectional analysis of the Canadian Community Health Survey

Centre for Studies in Family Medicine, The University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada.
BMC Family Practice (Impact Factor: 1.74). 11/2011; 12:118. DOI: 10.1186/1471-2296-12-118
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Primary health care is known to have positive effects on population health and may reduce at-risk behavior and health problems in adolescence. Yet little is known about the factors that are associated with adolescent and young adult utilization of family physician services. It is critical to determine the factors associated with utilization to inform effective primary health care policy. We address this gap in the primary health care literature by examining three issues concerning adolescent and young adult family physician use: inequity; the unique developmental stage of adolescence; and the distinction between utilization (users versus non-users) and intensity (high users versus low users).
We conducted nested logistic regressions for two outcomes: utilization and intensity of family physician services for early adolescence, middle adolescence, and young adulthood using the 2005 Canadian Community Health Survey.
Chronic conditions were associated with utilization in early and middle adolescence and intensity in all age groups. Respondents from Quebec had lower odds of utilization. Those without a regular medical doctor had much lower odds of being users. The factors associated with use in early and middle adolescence were in keeping with parental involvement while the factors in young adulthood show the emerging independence of this group.
We highlight key messages not known previously for adolescent and young adult use of family physician services. There is inequity concerning regional variation and for those who do not have a regular medical doctor. There is variation in factors associated with family physician services across the three age groups of adolescence. Health care and health care policies aimed at younger adolescents must consider that parents are still the primary decision-maker while older adolescents are more autonomous. There is variation in the factors associated with the two outcomes of utilization and intensity of services. Factors associated with utilization must be understood when considering the equitability of access to primary health care while factors associated with intensity must be understood when considering appropriate use of resources. The understanding gained from this study can inform health care policy that is responsive to the critical developmental stage of adolescence and young adulthood.

  • Source
    Revista Brasileira de Epidemiologia 06/2014; 17(1). DOI:10.1590/1415-790X201400010006ENG
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE Although many risk behaviors peak during young adulthood, little is known about health risk factors and access to care. This study assessed health indicators and health care access in a national sample of young adult veterans and civilians. METHODS Data were from the 2010 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, a national telephone survey. Of 27,471 participants, ages 19-30 years, 2.2% were veterans (74.6% were male) and 97.7% were civilians (37.6% were male). Gender-stratified comparisons assessed health indicators and health care access by veteran status. Multivariate logistic regression was used to examine health indicators and health care access as a function of gender and veteran status. RESULTS In the overall sample, women were more likely than men to have insurance, to have a regular physician, and to have had a routine checkup and yet were more likely to report financial barriers to care. Women also were more likely than men to report general medical and mental distress and higher lifetime anxiety and depressive disorders, whereas men were more likely to be overweight or obese and to report tobacco use and high-risk drinking. Adjusted analyses revealed a higher likelihood of general medical distress and higher rates of lifetime anxiety disorders among veterans compared with civilians, although there were no differences between veterans and civilians regarding health care utilization and hazardous drinking. CONCLUSIONS Findings extend the literature on health care status and modifiable risk factors for young adults by identifying differences between men and women and between veterans and civilians. Interventions may need to be tailored on the bases of gender and veteran status because of several differences in mental health and general health needs.
    Psychiatric services (Washington, D.C.) 03/2013; 64(6). DOI:10.1176/ · 2.81 Impact Factor

Full-text (3 Sources)

Available from
Aug 11, 2014