Child Health USA 2006
Photographs of children's faces

Health Services Financing and Utilization

timing of physician visits

In 2004, 11.8 percent of children under 18 years of age had not seen a physician or other health care professional in the previous year (not including overnight hospitalization, trips to the emergency room, home visits, or dental visits). Older children were more likely than younger children to go without a physician visit. More than 15 percent of 15- to 17-year-olds had not had a physician visit in the previous year, compared to only 5.9 percent of children under 5 years of age.

Across all age groups, Hispanic children were the least likely to have seen a physician in the prior year; non-Hispanic White children were most likely to have seen a physician, except among children under 5 years of age, among whom non-Hispanic Black children were the most likely. At all ages, Hispanic children were approximately twice as likely as non-Hispanic White children to have had no physician visits.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children have eight preventive health care visits in their first year, three in their second year, and at least one per year from middle childhood through adolescence.


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Child Health USA 2006 is not copyrighted. Readers are free to duplicate and use all or part of the information contained on this page. Suggested Citation: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration, Maternal and Child Health Bureau. Child Health USA 2006. Rockville, Maryland: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2006.