If you have not seen me around much in the past six weeks, it is because I was in my office filling out insurance applications during open enrollment. The Affordable Care Act and marketplace insurance are hot political topics that people tend to have strong opinions on. However, for the patients we serve who are not offered insurance through work and who are: 1) Just slightly over Medicaid income guidelines or 2) Have not been in the US for 5 years so they cannot get Medicaid, the marketplace insurance is a viable option for them. Actually, quite a few of the people that I worked with were able to get fairly low deductibles without a monthly premium because of the tax credits they qualified for.
While I was relieved to go the weekend without using the words premium, deductible, or co-payment, I am excited for the patients who will be able to access primary care. Here is where YOU come in. Our patients are excited to get insurance so they have coverage in case of emergency. They are not thrilled about the idea of moving on to see new doctors and nurses. I will help them to make that transition in the new year, which will open up slots in the schedule for others who do not have insurance. However, their hesitancy to go elsewhere tells me that YOU are doing a phenomenal job. You are compassionate and caring. You see not just their illness or disease, but keep in mind that there are other life stressors going on. You provide quality medical care, even though our patients cannot pay for it. To those who can be marginalized and stereotyped in society, you give grace and love and care. That speaks volumes to them, not just about our clinic but also about how God feels towards them.
Thank you for your investment in the lives of our patients! We may never fully know this side of heaven the impact YOU are making! Blessings to each of you in the new year.
Amy DeLay, Patient Advocate