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J Urban Health. 1998 Jun;75(2):367-78.

Toward a new urban health model: moving beyond the safety net to save the safety net--resetting priorities for healthy communities.

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Parkland Health and Hospital System, Dallas, TX 75235, USA.


Parkland Health and Hospital System has been successful by every measure of comparison among its peer institutions, yet it recognizes the imperative of adapting to changes in the regulatory, legislative, and market environments. Given its mandate and a desire to preserve its multiple missions and its partnerships with a highly rated medical school, the playing field for achieving robust survival is very uneven. This article describes the evolution of one of the best "sick care systems" in the United States into an integrated, excellent health care system for the 21st century. The problems faced by the safety net in many urban areas of this country are similar. Many problems are structural in nature and will, therefore, require structural solutions at the local, state, and national levels. Parkland will continue and will be needed for many years as the tertiary and quaternary center of a comprehensive service network made up also of a series of outreach Community Oriented Primary Care clinics and special populations projects. In addition, we hope to help create a community-oriented managed-care plan that encompasses the desire to work with both denominator and numerator populations in a real partnership with many other stake-holders.

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