Family perceptions of the usual source of care among children with asthma by race/ethnicity, language, and family income.
ABSTRACT A usual source of care (USC) can serve as the foundation for good primary health care and is critical for children living with a chronic health condition. This study applies national data to the following objectives: (1) describe family reports of the presence and characteristics of the USC for children with asthma; (2) examine evidence of systematic differences in the USC for these children with asthma by race/ethnicity, English language proficiency in Hispanic respondents, and family income; and (3) conduct multivariate analysis adjusting for possible confounding factors to examine independent effects of race/ethnicity, language, and income. Data from the 1996-2000 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) were analyzed. Overall, 95% of children with asthma had a USC, with Spanish-speaking Hispanics least likely to report a USC (89%). There were significant differences in USC attributes by race/ethnicity, language, and income, with the largest differences by type of provider and accessibility. Hispanics with poor English language proficiency had the greatest accessibility barriers.