The finding that Medicaid patients in Oregon used more ER services is not surprising. A study performed at the University of Missouri-KC showed that their patients in a low-income area utilized the ER because they felt that it offered better care than the university clinics to which they were assigned. This was true even though these clinics were happy to see them and were oriented to low-income patients.
Quality concerns may drive ER use
In the end, the issue may not be solely access but perception of quality.
Dr. Joseph J. Muscato, FACPMissouri Cancer AssociatesColumbia, Mo.
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