Health Care Access Is Hampered By Administrative Hurdles

BY SAMANTHA REID: For Complete Post, click here…

ngd-This is an article from Teen Vogue, which is doing a clearly better job of dealing with these policy issues than the mainstream media…

This op-ed talks about how seeking medical care can feel like a second job for disabled and chronically ill patients.

If you’ve ever had to schedule an appointment with a specialist or resolve a medical-billing issue, you know the U.S. health care system is rife with administrative hurdles. From minor tech glitches or systemic bureaucratic barriers to receiving care, Americans often have to jump through a series of hoops to get the attention they need — and for disabled and chronically ill patients, these hoops have become a constant source of strain.

“It really is like another full-time job,” says Kayle Hill, a 25-year-old patient and advocate with Disability Rights Connecticut. “The entire system is broken.”

Hill isn’t alone in making this assessment: Of the five patients interviewed for this story, all but one refer to administrative hurdles to care as a “second job.” Sararosa Davies, a 23-year-old podcast producer from Portland, Oregon, even blocks off several hours each Friday to handle administrative tasks related to treating her chronic illnesses. “It’s almost constant that I’m doing this admin,” Davies says. “Our medical system is impossible to navigate.”

While much has been written about how financial costs impact patients’ ability to receive care, much less study has been given to how non-financial costs, such as these administrative burdens, impact that same ability. This led researchers and Ph.D.s Michael Anne Kyle and Austin Frakt to tackle the subject: Their recent study, published in the Health Services Research journal, examines the prevalence of administrative burdens and the resulting negative impacts of delayed or foregone care.

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