Friday, March 17, 2017

Attitude toward health care depends on age

A Vitals Index study surveyed Millennials,  Gen X, and Boomers and found different attitudes on health care.


The youngest group surveyed, the Millennials are the healthiest.  In fact, they utilize health care less often than previous generations did at their age. Only 35% of these even have a primary care provider. One in four say they use an alternative facility--say an urgent care center--when sick.

The Millennials, however, tend to have a high degree of trust. Also, they tend to be over-sharers (social media) and favor a more open doctor-patient relationship. They are not afraid to engage authority--their parents have taught them their voice matters. Millennials also use digital media--such as doctor reviews. They also tend to trust institutions with their health data.

Generation X

These are in their late 30s and 40s. They don't trust doctors or the system. They tend to believe doctors are more about money than helping. They hate to open up with their doctors.  They are less likely to follow up on advice--and only 56% have a primary care doctor. In fact, one in four say they have lost trust in a doctor or institution in the last two yrs--more than any other generation.

Baby Boomers

This generation, being oldest, is the unhealthiest. They have a high rate of chronic disease, more disability, and lower self-rated health than any previous generation at the same age.

Therefore--83% of Boomers have a doctor. They prefer a team approach, though.  They value a doctor who will discuss treatment options in detail.  They also expect doctors to work at least a 50-hour week like they do and keep up on medical information. To find a doctor, Boomers rely more on recommendations from friends and family than the internet.

This seems to track with what I have observed. What do you think?

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