Your Source for Health Reform

Topic: Safety Net Hospitals



A general term for the hospitals and health centers that provide a substantial share of their care to low-income, uninsured, and vulnerable populations. These facilities have long served as a “safety net” for those with no other access to care, and they remain so for undocumented non-citizens and others who still lack health insurance.


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Health Plan Discrimination Advocacy Strategies

This blog post from Community Catalyst shows how stronger network adequacy standards can play a role in addressing discrimination, and spotlights how discrimination in health plans affects those with chronic illnesses, using people living with HIV/AIDS as an example. It is based on a workshop on advocacy strategies that Community Catalyst facilitated at the Consumer Voices for Coverage annual meeting in September 2014.

Health Insurance Marketplace: Continuing Education

This June 2014 self-study guide from HHS is designed to help health professionals become more knowledgeable about enrollment options that meet their patients’ needs and refer patients to appropriate resources. It is aimed at physicians, registered nurses, social workers, and others who accept health insurance. The course is designated for up to 1.25 AMA PRA Category 1 credits.

Non-Profit Hospitals and CHNA

This August 2014 blog post from Community Catalyst explains how the Community Health Needs Assessment can be a powerful tool to address health inequities. To maximize the value of this ACA-required process, non-profit hospitals should include public health experts and a range of community stakeholders, adopt culturally competent measures such as making surveys available in the languages spoken in the community, and develop implementation strategies in a formal and transparent plan.

Community Health Needs Assessment Hospital Toolkit

Tax-exempt and non-profit hospital systems are required to demonstrate the benefits to communities served through a Community Health Needs assessment. This toolkit from Community Catalyst provides hospitals with resources hat help clarify key terms and requirements under the ACA, and explain how to engender grass-roots participation and how to utilize health data.

Map of Free Clinics in Illinois

This interactive map shows the location of the federally qualified health centers, free clinics and county/local health departments in the state. Enter your zip code to find the clinics nearest you. Data is from the UIC School of Public Health and Illinois Dept. of Public Health.

Illinois Charity Care Laws for Urban Hospitals

It’s the law: If you are an uninsured patient, you have the right to apply for free or discounted services – and hospitals are required to provide you with a hospital financial assistance application. This fact sheet from ONE Northside provides the details on who is eligible and how to apply.

Tips on Enhancing Billing Capacities for Safety Net Providers

A fact sheet from the National Association Academy for State Health Policy to help answer billing questions that may arise for safety net providers during implementation of the Affordable Care Act.

The Role of Free and Charitable Clinics in 2014 and Beyond 

This June 2013 presentation provided an overview of the Affordable Care Act and discussed its implications for free and charitable clinics in Illinois. A recording is also available.

The ACA and Domestic/Intimate Partner Violence

A March 2013 presentation to the Suburban Cook County Intimate Partner Violence Healthcare Coalition, “The Affordable Care Act: What it is and How It will Help the People You Serve.”

Care Coordination, Managed Care and Long-Term Services and Supports 

This 2012 document from Health and Medicine Policy Research Group charts the roadmap for federal and state initiatives in these areas, both those already in effect and those to be phased in during 2013.

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