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Four years ago 2 concerned Manatee County citizens and myself started a not for profit corporation modeled after two successful programs, one located in Wisconsin and the other in Oregon. This not for profit corporation provided premium assistance for persons that were deemed eligible of the Affordable Care Act insurance program. The successful programs that we used as models received their funding from the local hospitals and medical community. When we approached Manatee Memorial the hospital administration would not participate with funding and we could never get a meeting with Blake Hospital. Our program lasted 2 years before we ran out of funding.

We obtained a plethora of data through the freedom of information act that showed the number and mix of patients being supported by payments to MMH, there were no personal identifiers in this data. The data showed that assuming all of the 591 in patient and over 5,000 er visit patients that MMH would have received at more than $15 million dollars in reimbursement for their care if they had been insured under the ACA.

The ACA is government subsidized private insurance. It would be better to have Medicare for all, but that is another explanation to show how it would benefit both consumers and providers. The ACA is what we have today and using the Oregon and Wisconsin models creates a win for all.

From: Manatee Memorial ends indigent and uninsured patient care program

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