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Brief Summary of Margie Schaps' Comments on Health Reform and Disproportionate Share Hospitals

Health & Medicine Policy Research Group (HMPRG)
November 13, 2009

Last month, Health & Medicine's Executive Director Margie Schaps was a panelist for Health Care Reform: Its Implication for Women, a symposium sponsored by Chicago Foundation for Women and the Anti-Defamation League and hosted at Seyfarth Shaw LLP i Chicago.   Below are a summary of some of Margie's comments:

Margie Schaps, executive director of the Health and Medicine Policy Research Group (a Foundation grantee), spoke about the challenges that health care reform poses for hospitals that serve primarily low-income communities, namely Disproportionate Share Hospitals (DSH). These hospitals, which operate as safety net institutions, receive most of their funding from the federal government through DSH payments. If the new health care reform passes, more Americans will have health insurance, and there will be less need for DSH hospitals. Unfortunately, under the reform, “half a million people [still] will not have health insurance,” Schaps asserted. She reminded us that, if DSH hospitals no longer receive proper funding, there “will always [be] people who are undocumented, mentally ill, and have drug addictions who will not be able to take advantage” of the hospitals’ services. Schaps helped remind us that, while many Americans will be covered under the new health care reform, there will still be a significant number of uninsured who will not have access to health care.

Read the brief summary of the symposium posted on Chicago Foundation for Women's website.