Children in Foster and Kinship Care at Risk for Inadequate Health Care Coverage and Access

Vol. VII, No. 4
July 2004

Children who live in foster care or kinship care arrangements often lack adequate physical or mental health care, according to new research by the University of Colorado’s Stephen Berman, M.D., and Sara Carpenter, M.D. Using data from the 1997 and 1999 rounds of the National Survey of America’s Families (NSAF) representing 4.5 million children, the researchers examined the relationship between out-of-home placement and health insurance status and utilization of physical and mental health care services. They found that a lack of health insurance, poverty, poor health status, low level of caregiver education, and disability are some of the factors that contribute to the lack of adequate health care in this population.