Political affiliations aside, we understood once this healthcare law was signed, the way we pay for insurance coverage would change forever.
At least we thought.
For many in North Carolina, things will stay the same. Women will go without mammograms and birth control, men will go without prostrate exams, and children will not see a doctor outside of the emergency room. If a family’s income is such that they can be exempt from buying insurance, that’s the path they will choose.
Who can blame them? For those on a limited budget, the day-to-day is of the utmost concern. For many, the risk of paying a larger fee later is one they can’t afford not to take.
Unless, that is, what we hear is right, and the uninsured can get a better deal not through Medicaid, not through an expansion, but by applying directly to the marketplace. Francine Chavis, of Legal Aid of Pembroke, is almost certain you will come out ahead. We recommend you pay her a visit and test that theory. What could it hurt?
It can’t really be denied that the more people who have insurance, the healthier the county will be, both physically and economically. Healthy people are better workers and put less strain on the county’s already taxed hospital system. Preventative health, covered by plans offered in the marketplace, is essential to a healthy workforce.
Right now, Gov. Pat McCrory is under pressure to rethink his decision on the Medicaid expansion, and we will have to wait and see if he will reverse his earlier position.
Until then, give signing up a chance. We don’t know what your payment will be, but it can’t hurt to find out.