Friday, June 29, 2012

Holes remain in health care law

By Nick Tabor, New Era Senior Staff Writer
The Affordable Care Act aims, above all, to solve the problem that millions of Americans can’t get access to medical treatment.
Since the U.S. Supreme Court didn’t strike down the law Thursday, there could be an influx of previously uninsured people who have health coverage by the end of 2014.
But insurance alone won’t guarantee everyone access to doctors. Now the biggest challenge for Christian County — and for Kentucky — will be finding enough medical providers to serve everyone, some health officials say.

Local residents react to Supreme Court decision

By Nick Tabor, New Era Senior Staff Writer
Among western Kentuckians polled late last year, only one in four said they had enough information about the Affordable Care Act to understand how it would affect them personally.
But a much larger ratio had opinions about the law.
Forty percent said they had a “generally unfavorable” opinion of the law, and 34 percent had a “generally favorable” opinion, according to the Kentucky Health Issues Poll. The remaining 26 percent expressed no opinion.

New doctor plans holistic approach

Office hosted open house Thursday
By Nick Tabor, New Era Senior Staff Writer
Eric Lee, Jennie Stuart’s president and CEO, told a crowd of roughly 100 people Thursday that he expects no shortage of demand for Green’s services. Most people realize the Pennyroyal region has a serious shortage of medical providers, Lee said.
Further, the Affordable Care Act, which the U.S. Supreme Court upheld Thursday morning, will lead to scores of thousands of local residents getting insurance. This will no doubt exacerbate the demand for doctors and nurses.
Guthrie MD will also treat people for urgent care, Green said. It will bring on more doctors in the future if necessary.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

ACA Suspense

I reported last week that 32 percent of western Kentucky's adult residents under age 65 don't have health insurance. In Christian County, this adds up to more than 22,00 people. (Read the story here.)

In a survey last year, 74 percent of the region's residents said they didn't know enough about the Affordable Care Act to understand how it would affect them personally. It's true many variables will remain, regardless of the Supreme Court's decision tomorrow. But the Washington Post has a great tool for drilling down into the projected effects.

The suspense keeps building. I'll have a story Friday on local reactions to the decision.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Affordable Care Act

Law would affect thousands of uninsured locals
By Nick Tabor, New Era Senior Staff Writer 

Spring Stillman, who has diabetes and a liver disease, has lived without health insurance since she was 18.
Stillman, now 37, handles bookkeeping for her husband’s flooring business, so she doesn’t have a large employer to provide benefits. But even when she worked at an accounting company for eight years, she couldn’t get insurance because of her pre-existing conditions.
Though St. Luke Free Clinic helps her a great deal, her insulin and pills cost more than $400 a month, and she pays more than $300 a month for cancer, heart and life insurance policies. And she’s still paying off a hospital bill from 2002.
She would gladly pay $500 a month for health insurance if she found a plan that gave enough benefits in return.