KCUR News
11:20 pm
Thu February 1, 2007

Network will Place Uninsured with Specialty Care Services

Kansas City, MO – A new referral network in Kansas City will link uninsured patients with specialists to get needed healthcare for no charge. KCUR's Kelley Weiss reports.

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The METROCare program will link uninsured and poor patients with charitable specialty services. The Northland Health Care Access, Wy/Jo Care and the Center for Practical Bioethics developed the program to fill the gaps in free healthcare services around the city.

Terry Rosell, of the Center for Practical Bioethics, says often low-income or uninsured patients cannot get specialty care. Rosell says METROCare will connect these patients - regardless of their income or insurance - with doctors who have volunteered to do knee surgeries or give cancer treatments, cardiology services or eye care for free.

Terry Rosell: "We want our health care providers to look at every individual and say how can we help you, what is your need? Not, what is your status within the society."

Rosell says so far 100 doctors have signed up to be in the referral network and it will start this month. He says although this program will not meet all the needs of the uninsured it does give patients a way to get connected to free specialty care.

Funding for health care coverage on KCUR has been provided by the Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City.

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