At first it may sound counter-intuitive, but people often need legal assistance in order to be healthy. In many cases, low-income individuals with medical challenges also face legal difficulties, which can negatively impact their health and delay their recovery. That’s where medical-legal partnerships step in. Medical-legal partnerships integrate legal services into the delivery of healthcare in order to address health-harming legal needs that disproportionately affect people living in poverty.
The PBEye has covered medical-legal partnerships in the past and we were excited to see them featured in a video segment on the PBS Newshour. Check out the video and see how a partnership between Nebraska Medicine and Legal Aid of Nebraska has benefitted patients and their families, improving outcomes while controlling costs.
The healthcare landscape is transforming rapidly, bringing a deeper integration of medical services, social services, and legal services. So far, medical-legal partnerships have been established in 292 healthcare institutions in 36 states. It’s an expanding area of legal services (two of the 2015 Legal Services Corporation pro bono innovation grants were awarded to medical-legal partnerships) with ample, meaningful opportunities for pro bono lawyers to get involved.
Leave a comment and tell us about your pro bono medical-legal partnership!