The COVID-19 pandemic has kept health issues and healthcare at the top of mind for many people across the globe over the past year. A new survey aimed to see just how serious the younger generations like millennials have taken their person health over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Harmony Healthcare IT recently surveyed 2,040 millennials on the topics of healthcare, primary care physicians and annual physical examinations during the pandemic. Let us take a look at what they found in the survey results.
Millennial health during COVID-19
The survey from Harmony Healthcare IT found that 79% of millennials say that they currently have a primary care physician. 28% of those said they got established with their primary care physician as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic. 65% of millennials report having received a check up from their primary care physician during the COVID-19 pandemic. When compared to a similar survey from Harmony Healthcare IT in 2019, the number of millennials who have a primary physician increased by 3% from 2019 and the number who received an annual checkup remained largely unchanged at 65%.
Are Millennials ignoring health issues?
The survey from Harmony Healthcare IT found that 43% of millennials report having been ignoring a health issue and almost 35% of millennials say they have not received a check up with their doctor during the COVID-19 pandemic. When compared to the similar survey from 2019, these numbers are pretty much the same. However, Harmony Healthcare IT provided a thorough breakdown of exactly how long millennials have been ignoring health issues. See the full breakdown below:
- How long have millennials been ignoring health issues: A month or less (12% of respondents)
- Two to three months (23% of respondents)
- Three to six months (18% of respondents)
- Six months to one year (14% of respondents)
- More than one year (33% of respondents)
The most common reasons millennials put off annual check-ups over the last year:
1. The COVID-19 pandemic
2. They feel healthy
3. Visits to the doctor are too expensive
4. Visits to the doctor are too inconvenient
5. They prefer urgent care over a primary care physician.
6. Say they are worried that they will have a serious health issue if they visit the doctor.
Once interesting finding from the survey from Harmony Healthcare IT is that younger generations are turning to Google and other online information sources for medical advice instead of consulting with their doctor or physician. This may not be totally surprising for a generation who has embraced technology since they were just children. The survey found that nearly 70% of millennials reported searching Google for health advice instead of going to their doctor to diagnose their symptoms. They also found that 24% of millennials trust google to diagnose their symptoms over their doctor.
Listed below are the top sources for medical advice for millennials:
1. WebMD (71% of millennials search for medical advice)
2. News articles (27% of millennials search for medical advice)
3. YouTube (26% of millennials search for medical advice)
4. Health apps (23% of millennials search for medical advice)
5. FamilyDoctor.org (18% of millennials search for medical advice)
6. Reddit (18% of millennials search for medical advice)
7. Everyday Health (16% of millennials search for medical advice)
On top of those statistics, the survey found that 83% of millennials report doing their own research after hearing their doctor’s advice. 42% of millennials trust their own research over their doctor’s advice. 37% would not visit a doctor if they had no online presence. 41% of millennials say they prefer to see their doctor virtually. It was also interesting to see that many millennials are turning to YouTube and Reddit to get their medical advice.
Medical debt related to the COVID-19 pandemic
The next part of the survey from Harmony Healthcare IT asked millennials about health related debt. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought financial hardship on many people across the country and the globe and as it turns out a decent percentage of millennials have taken on medical related debt during the COVID-19 pandemic. The survey found that 24% of millennials report having taken on medical debt during the past year as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
When it comes to exactly how much debt millennials have incurred during the pandemic, 20% said less than $1,000. 10% report between $1,000-$2,000. 9% reported taking on $2,500-$5,000 in medical debt. 5% said $5,000-$10,000 in medical debt and only 4% said they have taken on more than $10,000.
Millennials and the COVID-19 vaccine
The survey from Harmony Healthcare IT also asked about millennial interest in being vaccinated for COVID-19. The survey found that 55% of millennials said they would receive the COVID-19 vaccine when it was available. 25% said they would not receive the COVID-19 vaccine, and another 19% said they were not sure if they would get vaccinated. The survey found that men were slightly more interested in the COVID-19 vaccine than women with 60% of men reporting interest in receiving the COVID-19 vaccine where only 51% of women said they would get the vaccine when available. It will certainly be interesting to see if these numbers change later in the year when more people have access to receiving it.
Infographic by: harmonyhit