Challenges and Solutions

For the past decade, the U.S. has been home to a settled population of 11 million undocumented immigrants.

  • Low-income population with limited access to jobs offering health insurance. Excluded from federally funded insurance (Medicare, Medicaid).
  • Health care access relies heavily on federal provisions for emergency medical treatment (EMTALA) and for safety-net clinics.
  • Lack of insurance plus explicit exclusions severely limits access to non-emergency medical services beyond primary care clinics.
  • Outcomes data suggest that investment in non-emergency services prevents costly defaults to emergency provisions.
  • Ethical and practical uncertainties arise for professionals when policy does not support the delivery of standard medical care.
  • Local solutions include investments in coordinating public hospitals and clinics with nonprofit community health centers to provide reliable low-cost care.
  • State solutions include use of state-funded Medicaid mechanisms to provide coverage or reimbursement for needed services.
  • Federal policies prioritizing deportation add new uncertainties for professionals, organizations, and communities.

What We Do