Americans are accustomed to anecdotal evidence of the health care crisis. Yet, personal or local stories do not provide a comprehensive nationwide picture of our access to health care. Now, this book offers the long-awaited health equivalent of national economic indicators.
This useful volume defines a set of national objectives and identifies indicators--measures of utilization and outcome--that can "sense" when and where problems occur in accessing specific health care services. Using the indicators, the committee presents significant conclusions about the situation today, examining the relationships between access to care and factors such as income, race, ethnic origin, and location.
The committee offers recommendations to federal, state, and local agencies for improving data collection and monitoring.
This highly readable and well-organized volume will be essential for policymakers, public health officials, insurance companies, hospitals, physicians and nurses, and interested individuals.