Uncompensated Care by Hospitals or Public Insurance for the Poor
Blendon, Robert J.
Aiken, Linda H.
Freeman, Howard E.
Kirkman-Liff, Bradford L.
Murphy, John W.
New England Journal of Medicine. 1986 May 1; 314(18): 1160-1163.
Results from two recent surveys of access to health care, one nationwide and the other in Arizona, were analyzed to determine the consequences of reductions in Medicaid coverage and the accompanying shift of responsibility for the health care of the poor to health facilities that provide uncompensated or subsidized care. Access to physicians' services, as measured by the number of patient visits and the frequency of denial of care for financial reasons, was correlated with the availability and extent of the states' Medicaid programs. Poor children were most affected by these differences. Access to care by the aged poor who are covered by Medicare is fairly uniform across the country. The authors conclude that their analysis supports the contention that Medicaid is a more effective method of providing health care for the poor than is uncompensated care by hospitals and clinics. (KIE abstract)
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