The Missouri Hospital Association reports a dramatic increase in uninsured and underinsured patients checking into emergency rooms.
Spokeswoman Mary Becker says the problem is multi-faceted and that employers have been offering less insurance to employees for a few years now as premiums have gone up. The economic recession, she says, has merely exacerbated the problem.
State budget shortfalls could further financially impact patients and hospitals if cuts are made to the Medicaid system.
Click the sound icon below to listen to Mary Becker explain how this problem facing Missouri hospitals financially impacts everyone in the end.