- The Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program tracked the medical expenses of 119 chronically homeless people for several years. In one five-year period, the group accounted for 18,834 emergency room visits estimated to cost $12.7 million.”
- Four out of five physicians agreed that unmet social needs led directly to worse health.”
These are just a couple of the pieces of evidence that Elizabeth H. Bradley, professor of public health at Yale University, cited in her recent article published in the New York Times (click here for the full article). The United States spends the most on health care among industrialized countries but ranks much lower among these same countries when measuring health status indicators like life expectancy and infant mortality. What accounts for this discrepancy? Much lower spending on social services relative to health care. Published Dec. 8, 2011, Bradley compares the United States’ spending regime to those of other industrialized countries and asserts that in order to solve our health care crisis and improve the health of all Americans, the United States must reconsider its view of government spending and allocation toward social supports. Read the full article here.