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New Research Finds Recession Has Greater Impact on Health of Parents Than Children

Parents prioritize children's health over their own, while most Americans agree both are equally important

RIDGEFIELD, Conn., May 18 /PRNewswire/ -- The economic downturn has contributed to poorer overall family health and increased concerns among parents about losing their access to healthcare. Two-thirds of Americans (66 percent) believe it is equally important for parents to take care of their health and their children's health. However, American parents rank their own healthcare fourth (6 percent) on a list of top priorities - below their children's healthcare (54 percent), housing (25 percent) and food and groceries (11 percent).

Significantly more parents say the economic downturn has affected their own health and wellness compared to that of their children (57 percent vs. 41 percent). Despite this, a majority of Americans (50 percent) are concerned or worried about their ability to afford the healthcare they or their families need in the current economic downturn.

In fact, fewer than half (45 percent) of Americans say they have health insurance that generally meets their needs and is reasonably affordable given their current financial situation. The findings offer further perspective on recent reports from the National Association of Community Health Centers that 60 million people in the United States lack access to basic medical care.

The survey of 2,186 American adults was commissioned by Boehringer Ingelheim to evaluate Americans' views and concerns about healthcare access.

"As a family company, Boehringer Ingelheim is committed to improving the health of patients and their families, and these survey findings underscore the importance of expanding healthcare options for every generation," said J. Martin Carroll, president and CEO, Boehringer Ingelheim. "We are committed at all levels to partnering with community organizations to improve health and wellness for those most in need, through supporting free clinics - like the new Boehringer Ingelheim AmeriCares Free Clinic - access to medicines, and more."

Other findings from the survey include:

  • Half of Americans (50 percent) and more than half of parents (57 percent) say the current economic downturn has affected their personal health and wellness.
  • Even more Americans - six out of 10 (59 percent) - say the economic downturn will, or is likely to, affect their own health or wellness in the future. Among parents, this percentage is higher still, at 67 percent.
  • Three out of four Americans (75 percent) have some specific concern or worry about healthcare in the current economic downturn.
  • Of these, 19 percent of parents are worried or concerned most of all about losing their health insurance.
  • About two-thirds (62 percent) of Americans would seek out and go to a free clinic on a regular basis to meet their and their families' healthcare needs if they lost or could not afford health insurance, had no health insurance or could not qualify for a government-sponsored healthcare program.

About the Boehringer Ingelheim Family Health Survey

The Boehringer Ingelheim Family Health Survey was conducted on behalf of Boehringer Ingelheim by Greenfield Online between April 28 and April 30, 2009. The online survey interviewed a national sample of 2,186 U.S. adults ages 18 and older. The results are weighted and balanced of conform to U.S. census parameters for gender, age, region of residence, ethnicity and other demographics. The survey has a +/- 2-3 percent margin of error at 95 percent confidence.

About Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc., based in Ridgefield, CT, is the largest U.S. subsidiary of Boehringer Ingelheim Corporation (Ridgefield, CT) and a member of the Boehringer Ingelheim group of companies.

The Boehringer Ingelheim group is one of the world's 20 leading pharmaceutical companies. Headquartered in Ingelheim, Germany, it operates globally with 135 affiliates in 47 countries and approximately 39,800 employees. Since it was founded in 1885, the family-owned company has been committed to researching, developing, manufacturing and marketing novel products of high therapeutic value for human and veterinary medicine.

In 2008, Boehringer Ingelheim posted net sales of U.S. $17 billion (11.6 billion euro) while spending approximately one-fifth of net sales in its largest business segment, Prescription Medicines, on research and development.

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SOURCE Boehringer Ingelheim
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