The health status of patients of a student-run free medical clinic in inner-city buffalo, ny.
Sommaire de l'article
BACKGROUND: This study explores the health status and the social and economic correlates of adults 20 years of age and older who presented at an urban free medical clinic in Buffalo, NY, between 2002 and 2005. METHODS: Clinic staff asked patients to fill out a Health Risk Assessment questionnaire that addressed their chronic disease and illness history, mental health, social support, substance use, income, education, and housing. Through statistical analysis of 469 anonymous patient questionnaires, we identified prevalent health conditions in this patient population and compared these rates to regional and national data. RESULTS: Of those patients 20 years of age and older, 70% earned less than US $10,000 a year. The rates of obesity, hypertension, asthma, diabetes, anxiety, and depression were higher in this population than in the Buffalo, NY, region and the general United States population. CONCLUSION: The data reflect the health disparity experienced by low-income minority populations in the United States and emphasize a need to plan additional services that target hypertension, heart disease, obesity, diabetes, and mental health disorders such as anxiety and depression. Findings also serve as an introduction to the patient population for volunteer medical students who have limited exposure to urban, low-income populations.