Sociology Class Study
Support for this Augustana-funded survey has also been provided by Country-Wide Directory.
Michael Dulitz, a senior Sociology major from Webster, South Dakota, is working with faculty mentor Dr. Susan Schrader on researching health insurance access and health quality among family farmers in South Dakota.
Dulitz is invited to present a poster on his project at the 2013 Midwest Sociological Society Annual Meeting in Chicago, Ill., in March.
Farmers in rural areas often have a hard time accessing affordable health insurance to maintain a good health status. This project examines the question “What is the access to affordable health insurance and the quality of health among family farm owner/operators in South Dakota in 2012?” A review of literature reveals that many farmers already have health insurance, but many cannot afford it or take outside jobs to support it.
The research involves sending out a mail survey to 1,400 farmers in nine South Dakota counties inquiring about their use of health services, their health status, and their health insurance status. This group is representative of an important group of agricultural producers within the Midwest. Collected data will be entered into the computer using SPSS for subsequent statistical analysis.
This study will allow for a snapshot of insurance status among farmers just before the insurance mandate from the Affordable Care Act of 2010 goes into effect. This project has a planned completion date of May 2013, with a final report available in April 2013. Examining the health insurance status of farmers will allow for future public health interventions and awareness of health disparities among a rural population.