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Enabling Services Improve Access to Care, Preventive Services, and Satisfaction Among Health Center Patients (Health Affairs)

September 3, 2019

Journal Article

Authors: Dahai Yue, MD, MS, Nadereh Pourat, PhD, Xiao Chen, PhD , Connie Lu, MPH, Weihao Zhou, MS, Marlon Daniel, Hank Hoang, Alek Sripipatana, PhD, MPH, Ninez A. Ponce, PhD, MPP

​Enabling services address a combination of social determinants of health and barriers to access to primary care and are intended to reduce health disparities. They include care coordination; health education; transportation; and assistance with obtaining food, shelter and benefits. Empirical evidence of enabling services' potential contribution to health outcomes is limited, which impedes their widespread dissemination. 

Authors examined how the receipt of enabling services influenced patient health care outcomes based on a nationally representative survey of patients served in 2014 at health centers funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration. The also compared enabling services users and nonusers and found that enabling services were associated with 1.92 more health center visits, an 11.78-percentage-point higher probability of getting a routine checkup, a 16.34-percentage-point higher likelihood of having had a flu shot, and a 7.63-percentage-point higher probability of patient satisfaction. 

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