Patients without health insurance are flooding US emergency departments,
according to a new report by the National Association of Community Health
Centers, in Bethesda, Md.
An estimated 43 million individuals in the United States lack health
insurance, many of whom rely on emergency department visits for their basic
primary care. In 2002, there were 110.2 million visits to hospital emergency
departments, up from 89.8 million in 1998. Meanwhile, there were 15% fewer
emergency departments in 2002 than in 1998.
Hampton T. The ED and the Uninsured. JAMA. 2004;292(12):1419. doi:10.1001/jama.292.12.1419-a