Posts Tagged - ‘homeless’

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Homeless and Uninsured

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

Image: Michele Eve under CC 3.0

Compared to the general American population, the homeless are 10 times less likely to receive necessary health care. A person unable to afford shelter is obviously very unlikely to have health insurance–making care more difficult to find. About a third of them had problems finding needed surgical or medical services they could afford.

Although there are community clinics in many areas that charge based on a patient’s ability to pay–not to mention emergency rooms–there are issues with finding effective transportation, as well as their facilities. In addition, many clinics don’t cover vision or dental services. Both can be symptoms of general health issues.

Homeless individuals who had been employed at least part-time over the past year were more likely to be uninsured than the unemployed, possibly due to their lack of income eligibility for government health insurance plans such as Medicaid.

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Homeless Adults Will Get Health Insurance

Thursday, April 29th, 2010

Image: Franco Folini under CC 3.0

Due to provisions in the new healthcare reform bill, many homeless adults will receive health insurance through Medicaid. They are eligible if they earn up to 133% of the poverty level. If a person is living in shelters or on the street, they clearly aren’t able to afford a health insurance plan.

Although Medicaid has its disadvantages, it may be perfectly suited for this population. For example, it provides transportation services to doctors’ appointments, which most private plans don’t.

Community health centers are also set to receive increased funding for their services, which are offered on a sliding scale based on a person’s ability to pay, regardless of their health insurance status.

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