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Houston, Texas

People discussing health of women with disabilities
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Health Care--Ability to Obtain Care

Health Care Table of Contents

It is more difficult for women with disabilities than non-disabled women to obtain needed health services from both primary care physicians and specialists.

  • Younger women with disabilities have more difficulty obtaining general medical care, dental care, prescription medicines, eye glasses, and mental health care than younger non-disabled women.
  • Delaying care due to cost is a serious problem for women with disabilities, especially those in the 18-44 age range.
  • A substantial proportion of primary care physician's offices are still not in compliance with ADA requirements.
  • Nearly a third of women with physical disabilities reported being denied services at a doctor's offices solely because of their disability.

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Women with disabilities are more likely than non-disabled women to receive their usual medical care from specialists.

  • The average Medicare beneficiary with one or more chronic conditions sees eight different specialists.
  • Due to inadequate coordination and communications among different specialists, millions of people with chronic conditions receive inconsistent diagnoses for the same condition and were told by a pharmacist that a new prescription would interact with another drug they were already taking.
  • Medical information systems do not allow physicians to know how other physicians are treating a given patient.

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Barriers to health care have a disproportionate negative effect on the health and longevity of women with disabilities compared to non-disabled women.

  • A higher proportion of non-survivors with compared with survivors with lupus had reported difficulty in obtaining health care.
  • Limitations and cutbacks in the availability of in-home attendant services have a disproportionate negative effect on women, particularly women with disabilities.

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Health Care Table of Contents

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