This is how things are going in Kentucky: As conservatives argued that the new health-care law will wreck the economy, as liberals argued it will save billions, as many Americans raged at losing old health plans and some analysts warned that a disproportionate influx of the sick and the poor could wreck the new health-care model, Lively was telling Noble something he did not expect to hear.
“All right,” she said. “We’ve got you eligible for Medicaid.”
Places such as Breathitt County, in the Appalachian foothills of eastern Kentucky, are driving the state’s relatively high enrollment figures, which are helping to drive national enrollment figures as the federal health exchange has floundered. In a state where 15 percent of the population, about 640,000 people, are uninsured, 56,422 have signed up for new health-care coverage, with 45,622 of them enrolled in Medicaid and the rest in private health plans, according to figures released by the governor’s office Friday.
If the health-care law is having a troubled rollout across the country, Kentucky — and Breathitt County in particular — shows what can happen in a place where things are working as the (ACA) law’s supporters envisioned.
One reason is that the state set up its own health-insurance exchange, sidestepping the troubled federal one. Also, Gov. Steve Beshear (D) is the only Southern governor to sign on to expanded eligibility parameters for Medicaid, the federal health-insurance program for the poor.
I still long for a single-payer health care system.
And, yes – the Affordable Health Care Act lumbered to life only through a Frankensteinish stitchwork of public & prvate systems. HealthCare.gov itself, though functioning, is still less than optimal. 1
But the law has already made a real difference, and not just in Kentucky; even Wisconsin Gov. Walker is doing the right thing for the people in his state (if only out of perversity.)
As the ACA roll out continues how much longer do you think it will be before the hopelessly retarded white, southern Republican core voters realize that the GOP has bent them over the end table without benefit of a ‘by your leave’, much less a reach-around? And what will those voters do when that epiphany comes upon them?
That’s right: I’m looking at you Missouri and Kansas. 2
- Though to many Feds this is hardly news; many of us can relate woebegone tales of other web applications –with costs running to a billion dollars or more — that run so poorly we expect actual beheadings. All that ever seems to occur is Congress allocates more funds for the pieces of shit. Need I mention here these are all web apps produced by 3rd party contractors? ↩
- Regardless of geographic location, politically Kansas is more Southern than Arkansas, Maryland and Delaware. Intellectually it ranks right up there with the great Southern state of Tex-ass. Culturally? Forget I mentioned it… ↩