If we fail to deal with the problem of the uninsured, more and more people without insurance will see their health deteriorate from mostly preventable illnesses. This truth was brought home recently by Jack Hadley, Ph.D., of the Urban Institute. He looks at uninsured individuals who have had a health shock - the onset of a chronic illness or injury. Only half of the uninsured studied sought medical care. If the uninsured received care, they were less likely to comply with recommended follow-up care. The uninsured reported incomplete recovery more frequently than insured individuals. The uninsured people studied reported worse health 7 months after the health shock,.
Chronic conditions usually need medical care over a a long time and the uninsured are less able to comply with treatment recommendations .The study's finding at the first follow-up interview that the uninsured frequently report no longer being treated indicates inadequate care. They will depend on emergency room care will make it more likely their care will lack continuity.
From March 14, 2007 issue of JAMA. American Medical Association (AMA)