The effect of health insurance disparities on the health care system.AORN J. 2007 Nov; 86(5):745-56.AJ
Uninsured patients put a strain on the health care system that ultimately results in increased health care costs for everyone. The challenges faced by the Harris County Hospital District in Houston, TX, as a result of an increasing number of uninsured and underinsured patients include overcrowding in its health care facilities, decreased reimbursement from government programs, and patients who postpone seeking medical treatment until their situation is emergent and whose care is therefore more expensive. Strategies for addressing these problems may include instituting an "everybody pays" program, improving access to care for the uninsured, and reducing or eliminating unnecessary services.