Regarding the June 5 Xpress article “The Parent Trap: Insurance Coverage Gap Impacts Children’s Health” by Brooke Randle: Many thanks to Brooke Randle for her excellent article on the situation faced by low-income parents when their income is a bit too high to qualify for Medicaid or too low to qualify for a policy through the Affordable Care Act.
Being in this “gap” leaves these parents vulnerable to illness or injury with no means to pay for their own medical expenses. And of course that lack of medical care can mean missed hourly work, which then endangers their job and stable income. States that have enacted health care access to parents in this gap provide stability for parents, their children and their communities.
This “gap” is of course a human creation. If it were an act of nature, we could understand it as a form of “fate,” but in reality the cause of this gap is political neglect. Solutions that have been on the table during recent years include Medicaid expansion, Carolina Cares, Care4Carolina and currently NC Health Care for Working Families (HB 665). Both Republicans and Democrats have proposed legislation that they hoped would be a basis for a bipartisan solution, but so far those efforts have failed.
Gov. Cooper favors a “clean” Medicaid expansion bill. However, in spite of added expense and bureaucracy, the Republican bill (NC Health Care for Working Families) has the best chance of achieving a bipartisan compromise — if Republican majorities in our state Senate and House will move it through the legislative process. Please urge your senator and representative to move the bill on to Gov. Cooper for his signature. They need to hear from you!
We are giving our North Carolina tax dollars away to 37 states that have already enacted legislation to care for their citizens who find themselves in this gap. Let’s deliver those dollars to our own citizens.
— Paul Smith