Maternal and Child Health Journal

, Volume 18, Issue 3, pp 744–754

Factors Related to Receipt of Well-Child Visits in Insured Children

  • Amber M. Goedken
  • Julie M. Urmie
  • Linnea A. Polgreen

DOI: 10.1007/s10995-013-1301-2

Cite this article as:
Goedken, A.M., Urmie, J.M. & Polgreen, L.A. Matern Child Health J (2014) 18: 744. doi:10.1007/s10995-013-1301-2


Our objective was to identify factors related to receipt of the recommended number of well-child visits in insured children. We hypothesized parent insurance status would be related to receipt of well-child visits, with those with uninsured parents more likely to have fewer visits than recommended. Data for the study came from the 2007 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey-Household Component. The sample included children <18 years of age with full-year insurance coverage and parents who were insured or uninsured the entire year. The outcome variable indicated whether children had received fewer than the recommended number of well-child visits in physician offices or outpatient departments. Parent, family, and child characteristics were measured. Forty-eight percent of the 4,650 children included in the study had fewer well-child visits than recommended. Children whose parents did not visit a physician during the year and children whose parents had not completed high school were more likely to miss recommended visits. Parent insurance status did not affect well-child visits. We identified child, family, and parent factors influencing well-child visits in insured children, including the parent’s own use of physician visits. Contrary to our hypothesis, well-child visits were not influenced by parent insurance status. Determining which insured children are at greater risk of missing recommended well-child visits aids policymakers in identifying those who may benefit from interventions to improve use of preventive care.


ParentsChild healthNational surveysPreventive health servicesUtilization



Confidence interval


Federal Poverty Level


Mental Component Summary-12


Medical Expenditure Panel Survey-Household Component


Not significant


Odds ratio


Physical Component Summary-12


Standard deviation

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Amber M. Goedken
    • 1
  • Julie M. Urmie
    • 2
  • Linnea A. Polgreen
    • 3
  1. 1.Division of Health Services ResearchUniversity of Iowa College of PharmacyIowa CityUSA
  2. 2.Division of Health Services ResearchUniversity of Iowa College of PharmacyIowa CityUSA
  3. 3.Division of Health Services ResearchUniversity of Iowa College of PharmacyIowa CityUSA