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Health Care Panel Holds Hearing in St. Louis

By Kevin Lavery, KWMU

St. Louis, MO – Getting a handle on the rising cost of health care and ensuring greater access to it was the focus of a Missouri House interim committee hearing today in St. Louis. Physicians and health insurance representatives testified that health care costs in the U-S are rising 10 to 15 percent each year. Dr. Jim Crane with the St. Louis Regional Health Commission urged lawmakers to invest in programs that improve the health of chronically ill patients on Medicaid, "And these individuals can benefit enormously from intense case management and care coordination. We believe that it is possible to reduce the need for hospitalization for these individuals as well as other costly treatments; emergency room visits, et cetera."

An estimated 44 million Americans do not have health insurance. That figure translates to about 10 percent of Missouri adults.

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