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May 18, 1994

Counting the Uninsured-Reply

Author Affiliations

Harvard School of Public Health Boston, Mass

JAMA. 1994;271(19):1484. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03510430035026

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In Reply.  —Dr Reynolds raises a good question about whether people without private or public forms of health insurance have access to other types of medical care. In almost all studies of people without health insurance, the sources of medical care benefits listed by Reynolds are not considered to be health insurance. They are not equivalent to health insurance because they provide access only to specific types of medical care, whereas health insurance provides financial payments for a broad set of medical care benefits. For example, an uninsured person who sustains a leg injury on the job would have the costs of the injury paid for by workers' compensation. However, if the person were found to have some form of cancer, the costs of treating the cancer would not be paid for by workers' compensation.I agree with Reynolds that scaremongering tactics about the uninsured will not serve the public

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