Crisis of care[1]

Crisis of care[1] - The community's perspective on health...

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ACrisis of Care The community’s perspective on health care in St. Louis City A report developed by the Saint Louis University School of Public Health and funded by the Episcopal-Presbyterian Charitable Health and Medical Trust March 2003
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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS This report is the final product of a two- year project developed and funded by the Episcopal-Presbyterian Charitable Health and Medical Trust. We wish to thank Bishop Hayes Rockwell and the Trust Board, especially Dr. Katherine Jahnige, for their inspiration and sup- port. We also would like to recognize the partnership of the Trust with the St. Louis Community Foundation, led by David Luckes and Linda Aitch, for its contributions to this project. Finally, our thanks go to Dr. James Kimmey, for his insight as to the need for focus group information.
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1 We made a home visit on a family in north St. Louis…because they had missed preven- tive care. And when the home health worker went into the home, she found the mother was there with many children. The mother was suffering from postpartum depression. The baby was on a [respirator] and the house was rat infested. They had no electricity for the baby, so they were stealing electricity from the neighbor to be able to support the baby’s life support. Obviously they were in health crisis in more than one [way]…but she didn’t know where to begin. There were so many layers to peel away from this family that to get to their health care…and they definitely had health care needs.” The health care industry in this nation is well known for its benefits but also its problems. While this is also true locally, St. Louis City has often been nationally recognized when it comes to health care resources. The City is home to two med- ical schools and several nationally recog- nized hospitals. The City also provides care to residents through 20 different sites associated with Federally Qualified Health Centers, ConnectCare, or private health centers or physicians. Yet, even with such excellent resources, the City of St. Louis has problems that place it below national norms on many health indicators. Rates of heart disease, stroke and cancer, the nation’s leading causes of death, are higher in St. Louis than in the rest of the state and the nation as a whole. In addition to the chronic conditions, St. Louis has a higher death rate from infectious diseases, such as pneumonia and influenza, than the nation. AIDS is the tenth leading cause of death in St. Louis but is not on the national list of the ten leading causes of death. [See table in Appendix.] What follows is a report on the impres- sions of St. Louis City residents as to why health care delivery continues to fail them. In the report, we “peel away the layers” of health care access and quality and demonstrate health care’s troubled infrastructure and its interrelatedness to the fundamental aspects of life in the City. Residents’ views are highlighted through a fictional account of one family’s attempts to access care. This story is
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This note was uploaded on 03/27/2012 for the course HEALTH 350 taught by Professor Cooper during the Spring '12 term at MO St. Louis.

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Crisis of care[1] - The community's perspective on health...

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