She and six other executives of rural hospitals shared their challenges dealing with uninsured patients that seriously affect their bottom lines. Five of the hospitals, including
"It was a great experience and I felt honored to be there," Orth said Thursday. She said they all talked about "the challenges they face in delivering high-quality, low-cost care, and how expanding affordable insurance coverage to people without insurance would help rural health systems and their communities.
"I had the opportunity to talk about
She said 16 percent of the population of the county is uninsured. "Some of those could get health coverage under Medicaid expansion," Orth said. "A single diagnosis can create a great struggle (for a family) because of the cost of medication and treatment. With insurance, a family can spend money on food and clothes."
Orth said she focused on the emergency room at
Legislation has been presented in the
Orth said the reason for the talks about expanding Medicaid is that some people don't qualify for subsidies under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) exchange and also don't meet guidelines for Medicaid. She said they're looking at ways to close the insurance gap for those people.
According to a press release from the governor's office, 37 states (including the
The press release also made the following claim: "Currently, a family of four with working parents must earn less than
It's estimated that expanding Medicaid in
Orth brought up the issue of economics that Medicaid expansion would affect. "I mentioned that we're the center of the state with the
"Our survival is also about important economic initiatives," Orth said. "The
"The zoo is also a major attraction," she said. "It needs a health care system here."
The other hospital executives at the roundtable discussion were:
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