State medicaid director, Mission CEO to discuss Affordable Health Care Act at June 3 public forum

Here’s the press release from the Elders United for a Just Society group:


Dr. Craigan L. Gray, director of the state’s Medicaid program, and Dr. Ronald A. Paulus, head of Mission Health, will speak and answer questions about the Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”) Sunday, June 3 from 3 to 5 p.m. at New Hope Presbyterian Church, 3070 Sweeten Creek Road, Asheville.

The forum entitled “The Affordable Care Act: What North Carolinians Need to Know” is sponsored by Elders United for a Just Society, a Buncombe County-based group that promotes education and open-minded dialogue on contemporary social policy challenges. The forum is free, nonpartisan and open to the public.

Dr. Gray, director of the Division of Medical Assistance, North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (North Carolina Medicaid) will describe key provisions of the Affordable Care Act and the ways in which these provisions will be implemented in North Carolina. He will also address the policy implications of potential U.S. Supreme Court actions.

Dr. Paulus, president and CEO of Mission Health since September 2010, will discuss how the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has accelerated the pace of health care delivery system change as providers create new structures to operate more efficiently and provide higher quality care.

All the implications of the Affordable Care Act are not widely understood. Its future depends on the U.S. Supreme Court’s forthcoming decision on the constitutionality of the law’s requirement that all U.S. citizens and legal residents procure health insurance coverage by 2014 and the expansion of Medicaid to all non-Medicare eligible individuals under age 65 with incomes up to 133% of the federal poverty level by 2014.

The Henry J. Kaiser Foundation estimates that 26 to 29 per cent of the non-elderly population of Buncombe County will benefit from expanded Medicaid eligibility or tax credits to subsidize the cost of private insurance by 2014.

Dr. Gray and Dr. Paulus will respond to questions from the audience following their presentations.

For further information, contact Pat Deck at (828) 277-1083 or


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