Kentucky Uninsured React To Securing Health Care Coverage Under Obamacare

Despite the efforts of Kentucky’s congressional delegation to stymie the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, uninsured residents in one of the state’s poorer counties were pleasantly surprised to find they could now enroll in health insurance plans.

The Washington Post detailed some interactions between uninsured residents of Kentucky’s Breathitt County, which ranks among the poorest and unhealthiest in the nation, and a worker at a local health clinic as those residents signed up for coverage on the state-based exchange, Kynect.

In one transaction, the health clinic worker told Ronald Hudson, a previously uninsured father of five who makes $14,000 a year before taxes, that he qualified for a medical card.

“Well, thank God,” Hudson responded laughing, according to the Post. “I believe I’m going to be a Democrat.” 

Here’s another exchange the Post highlighted, in which a 52-year-old disabled electrician being sued for unpaid medical bills secured coverage:

“You smoke?” Lively asked, going through a few routine questions.

“Right- and left-handed,” he quipped as she typed.

“All right,” Lively said after a while. “You are covered.”

“I’m covered?” Fletcher said. He slapped the table. He clapped twice.

“Woo-hoo! I can go to the doctor now?” he asked Lively. “I’m serious. I need to go.”

The success of those transactions may be attributed in part to Kynect’s smooth launch and Gov. Steve Beshear’s (D) decision to expand Medicaid in the state.

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