One reason for insurance is to protect against nasty surprises — a bad fall, a broken arm, a sudden illness.
But there’s evidence that having insurance also tends to keep you healthier, year-in and year-out, because of the preventive benefits. The Public Health data experts looked at King County’s population and found:
- You are twice as likely to get a flu shot if you have health insurance.
- You are 150% more likely to get recommended cancer screenings, such as mammograms and colonoscopies, if you have health insurance than if you don’t.
- If you’re uninsured, you are five times more likely to skip getting medical treatment when needed.
Yes, it’s smart to have protection that covers hospital visits (which is the main theme in Washington Healthplanfinder’s TV advertisements). But, the reason health insurance is part of the county’s broader strategy for a healthier community is because getting covered can help keep you well, too.