RWJF to Fund IOM Study of Access to Care
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the nation's largest health care foundation, has awarded the Institute of Medicine a $3.7 million grant to study how lack of insurance affects access to health care, the AP/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports. The Institute of Medicine is part of the National Academy of Sciences, a private advisory group chartered by Congress. The AP/Journal Sentinel reports that the study will likely measure the impact of lack of insurance on individuals, families and communities, questioning what care the uninsured receive, who pays for such services and "how public health and productivity are affected by the uninsured." The institute's study committee will review "all the research on the issue and decide whether more research is needed," the AP/Journal Sentinel reports. American Medical Association President-elect Dr. Richard Corlin said that the uninsured often seek care in emergency rooms and "rarely" receive screening tests, creating the risk that "dangerous conditions" might go undiagnosed "for years." Robert Wood Johnson President Dr. Steven Schroeder "believe[s] lack of insurance can trigger or worsen health problems," the AP/Journal Sentinel reports. Noting that 53% of respondents to a survey last year said they felt the uninsured get sufficient care, Schroeder added, "We hope that the conventional wisdom will change" and that policy makers will work to increase health insurance access (AP/Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 12/18).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.