One of the greatest needs in the County is specialty care for uninsured, low income residents. In Central and East Contra Costa there are very few community clinics who provide primary care and those clinics do not have sufficient specialty care options for their patients who need specialty consultations, diagnostic studies and inpatient treatment. Low income, uninsured patients referred by a primary care provider from La Clinica de la Raza in Concord, Pittsburg or Oakley will receive diagnostic and inpatient care at JMH facilities from JMH affiliated physicians. The program will be based in the Cancer Institute and address needs for breast, cervical, lung and gastroenterology services. Diagnostic care provided will be for symptomatic patients rather than screening studies. JMH is contributing the hospital component of care as a community benefit program.
Through the Specialty Care Program, Raul received an endoscopy at John Muir Health.
Raul is 47-years-old and works full time in a restaurant to support his three children. He has been going to the Monument clinic for two years for recurrent stomach irritation and pain, and was being treated for gastreophageal reflux disease (GERD) with persistent symptoms. When his sister developed breast cancer he became extremely anxious, fearing that his symptoms signaled stomach cancer. Raul couldn't afford an upper endoscopy because he lacked insurance. Through the Specialty Care Program, Raul received an endoscopy at John Muir Health. The physician was then able to confirm that the cause of the chronic heart burn and pain was GERD with a benign biopsy of gastritis. He is greatly relieved to know he doesn't have stomach cancer and is being treated medically.
- As of December 2011, 38 specialties have been recruited in addition to hospital-based physician groups.
- In 2011, the program received 22 referrals of which 12 were accepted.
- Out of the 12 accepted referrals, 7 received a consultation, 4 had diagnostic tests, and 1 received surgery.