Identifying Affordable Sources of Medical Care Among Uninsured Persons

January 2007
Health Services Research , Online Early Issue
Peter J. Cunningham, Jack Hadley, Genevieve Kenney, Amy J. Davidoff

This research examined whether uninsured people paid full or reduced costs at their usual source of care, or if they were aware of providers in their community that charge less for uninsured people. The study found that less than half of the uninsured (47.5%) reported they used or were aware of lower priced providers. Expansion of safety-net capacity increases the likelihood of having a lower priced provider as the regular source of care and greater awareness of lower-priced providers, although many uninsured people who live near safety-net providers are not aware of their presence. Greater outreach designed to increase awareness may be needed in order to increase the effectiveness of safety-net providers in improving access to care for the uninsured.

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