Patients Visiting Indiana Health Centers Increase Financial Strain
The number of patients seeking care at Indiana's federally fundedhealth clinics has grown by almost 50% since 2002, from 118,000 to176,000 in 2006, the Indianapolis Star reports.
Findingthe resources to handle the increase in patients has been "daunting,"and clinic managers "say theirs is a constant strain to care for thegrowing numbers of uninsured," according to the Star. Theclinics, which primarily serve uninsured residents and Medicaidbeneficiaries, are financed through state and federal dollars, patientpayments, and private grants and contributions, according to the Star.
Whilefederal funding for these centers has increased at both the state andfederal levels, the "priority has been to allocate that money towardestablishing new centers in mostly poor, rural counties, not expandingexisting centers in the cities," according to the Star.Sabrina Williams, medical director at Citizens Health Center inIndianapolis, said, "We're feeling a bit overwhelmed. We're trying todo everything we can to provide patients with what they need, but we'renot getting what we need," adding, "Our resources are strained"(Jarosz, Indianapolis Star, 8/13).
Reprinted with permission from kaisernetwork.org. Youcan view the entire Kaiser DailyHealth Policy Report, search the archives, and sign up for email deliveryat kaisernetwork.org/email. The Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report is published for kaisernetwork.org, afree service of The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation.