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Patient Data Analysis Report Finds More Than 75 Percent of Chronically Ill Patients Unable to Obtain Needed Healthcare Have Some Form of Insurance
Date:6/17/2008

New trend findings of 'underinsured' patients based on successful management of nearly 45,000 cases by national, non-profit Patient Advocate Foundation in 2007

NEWPORT NEWS, Va., June 17 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Patient Advocate Foundation (PAF) -- a national non-profit organization providing direct case management services and healthcare information to millions of patients with life-threatening, debilitating and chronic diseases each year who are unable to obtain access to healthcare because of financial issues or insurance denials -- today released their annual Patient Data Analysis Report (PDAR), which includes detailed analysis of general and specific healthcare access and insurance trends at the national and state-specific level. Regarded as a thorough and reliable resource by policymakers, healthcare providers and stakeholders and other members of the healthcare community, this expert data analysis offers a comprehensive summary of issues impacting Americans' access to healthcare.

PAF is on the frontlines of the healthcare access battle millions of Americans fight every day. Last year alone, PAF received 6.9 million contacts from patients, family members and care professionals requesting information and assistance. PAF's professional case managers successfully managed 44,812 cases for patients that required direct, sustained mediation and arbitration services. Seventy-six percent (76%) of these patients were insured through plans, but were still unable to obtain physician-prescribed healthcare despite coverage, reflecting an alarming trend of underinsured patients in the nation's healthcare system. Seventy-eight (78%) percent of PAF patients are cancer patients. The remaining twenty-two (22%) have chronic diseases including cardiac conditions, diabetes, osteoporosis, stroke, COPD, HIV, Parkinson's disease and Lupus.

"Each year, PAF is able to help more Americans gain access to the healthcare services they need, but we continue to see thousands of patients and family members struggle with rejected insurance claims, many denials based on pre-existing health conditions. Additionally, current cost shifting burdens such as accelerated co-payments in combination with caps on services, pharmaceutical products, medical devices and reduced annual benefit caps pose access challenges that can lead to life-or-death delays in treatment," said Nancy Davenport-Ennis, founder, president and CEO of PAF. "PAF proudly publishes the annual PDAR to provide an up-to-date snapshot of healthcare in America including vital healthcare and insurance trends that we hope can serve as a reference for healthcare policymakers and other stakeholders as they work to address the global healthcare crisis America now faces."

PAF collects data from each patient contact received throughout the year, though phone, email, live chat and website contacts with patients seeking assistance from PAF's expert case managers. In addition to providing analysis of national healthcare trends, the PDAR highlights PAF's 12-year history in resolving complex health insurance issues, such as benefit denials and appeals. Originally published in 1997, this data has been increasingly requested by lawmakers, MedPAC, congressional offices, academics and advocacy organizations. Since its inception in 1996, PAF has touched more than 20 million American lives.

For more information about Patient Advocate Foundation or to request a copy of the 2007 PDAR, please visit http://www.patientadvocate.org or call toll free (800) 532-5274.

Patient Advocate Foundation is a national non-profit organization that seeks to safeguard patients through effective mediation assuring access to care, maintenance of employment and preservation of their financial stability.


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SOURCE Patient Advocate Foundation
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