RALEIGH (AP) -- Research shows that paying for basic checkups and pregnancy care for illegal immigrants would save money in the long run and possibly avoid expensive emergency treatment.
Researchers looking at so-called emergency Medicaid in North Carolina found that the overwhelming majority of such patients were female Hispanic illegal immigrants. The study also showed that more than 80 percent received care related to childbirth and complications of pregnancy.
Dr. E. Richard Brown, director of the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, says there are signs that the immigrants are staying in the community. He says several studies have shown taxpayers can save about $3 for every $1 spent on prenatal care.
North Carolina is not among the nearly two dozen where lawmakers have decided to provide recent immigrants, and pregnant women and children who are illegal immigrants, with additional health care coverage.
(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)