Can Mass. close the gaps on #insurance for #kids, hospital care for #minorities?

@ White Coat Notes, a report on a new Health Affairs study:

The state’s program scores hospitals according to the quality of care they provide to minority patients in five clinical areas: prevention of surgical infection, pneumonia, pediatric asthma, and the health of mothers and of newborns. But many hospitals had too few non-white patients within each group to statistically compare their care to that of white patients.

Even when the researchers combined the statistics for each hospital to compare care statewide, they did not find significant differences between racial groups.  The authors said that does not mean that the disparities don’t exist. Nationally, they are well-documented.

But the state, which distributed $32 million in incentive payments last year, may be looking in the wrong place, the authors said. 

The paper also offers an advance on today’s announcement re:kids and health insurance:

A monthlong campaign to search out and enroll many of the estimated 3,300  remaining uninsured children has resulted in new coverage for 1,479  youngsters, according to Health Care for All,  a Boston-based consumer group that is leading the initiative. But advocates say the campaign has also highlighted burdensome paperwork requirements that often result in children being booted off of Medicaid, the state and federal program for low-income people, though they are still eligible 



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