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SINKLER MILLER MEDICAL ASSOCIATION DOUBLES ITS SERVICES TO MEDI-CAL AND INDIGENT PATIENTS

      SINKLER MILLER MEDICAL ASSOCIATION DOUBLES ITS SERVICES TO
                  MEDI-CAL AND INDIGENT PATIENTS
    OAKLAND, Calif., Nov. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Michael LeNoir announced today that the Sinkler Miller Medical Association will attempt to increase the number of Medi-Cal patients served by its physicians by 100 percent, the first commitment of its kind made by any U.S. Medical Association.
    Founded in 1969, the Sinkler Miller Medical Association is the local component of the National Medical Association representing over 150 black physicians in Alemeda and Contra Costa counties.  The primary focus of the organization is to broaden the availability of quality health care to the poor and disadvantaged in the community.
    A disproportionate number of patients in the Medi-Cal population are African American.  Blacks in this country have an average life expectancy of 70 years vs. 76 years for whites.  As a group of African American physicians, the Sinkler Miller Medical Association strives to intervene in this ongoing deprivation of medical care to the African American community.
    Over the past several years, the number of physicians accepting Medi-Cal patients has dropped significantly.  Physicians legitimately claim as the reasons low reimbursement rates, denial of reasonable claims, excess paperwork and slow payments.  Regardless of the reasons, many of the ill and infirm have been left without access to a physician.
    Often the only recourse for these patients is the county hospitals and community clinics.  While struggling to meet the increased demand, these already overburdened public resources face ever-increasing funding cuts resulting in reduced, delayed or no access at all for patients in need.
    In response to this expanding void of qualified medical practitioners, the Sinkler Miller Medical Association will undertake a humanitarian relief effort to increase substantially the number of patients they provide for.  While the small size of the organization limits their ability to have a major impact on this problem, it is their hope that this gesture will inspire other physicians to join them in providing sorely needed access for Medi-Cal patients.  The organization is committed to changing the Medi-Cal program so that it not only provides more effective health care services but encourages health care providers to participate in the system.
    Sinkler Miller Medical Association has established a referral number that patients wishing to see one of their doctors can call. Call 415-466-0364 for doctor referral service.
    -0-                      11/18/91
    /CONTACT:  Ave Montague of Ave Montague and Associates for Sinkler Miller Medical Association, 415-346-1183/ CO:  Sinkler Miller Medical Association ST:  California IN:  HEA SU: DB -- SF008 -- 4731 11/18/91 20:50 EST
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Copyright 1991 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 18, 1991
Words:421
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