Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations
Not-For-Profit Cincinnati Pharmacy Helps Close Gap in Health Care
Reuters/Washington Post on Thursday profiled a not-for-profit pharmacy that is located in a "poor and crime-ridden section" of Cincinnati and predominately serves minority patients. Crossroad Health Center, which started in the neighborhood in 1992, opened the pharmacy in January. It receives funds from federal and local government grants, the University of Cincinnati, faith-based groups and residents. In addition, the pharmacy receives donated medications from local nursing homes and discounted treatments from drugmakers. Many of the prescriptions the pharmacy fills are covered by Medicaid, Reuters/Post reports. Because the pharmacy is located "in an area notorious for drug and gun crimes," pharmacy organizers took extra precautions, including installing bullet-proof glass and drywall to separating pharmacists and medications from customers. The pharmacy also has a police substation in the waiting area. Before the pharmacy opened, some residents traveled several miles away to fill prescriptions. Because of transportation problems and other issues, "prescriptions often went unfilled, and patients skipped medications and got sicker," Reuters/Post reports. Linda Elam, principal policy analyst at the Kaiser Family Foundation, said the pharmacy serves as a model for other communities, adding, "The poorest communities often have the largest illness burden, and they are the ones with the least means to deal with it" (Hopkins, Reuters/Washington Post, 3/22).
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