• About Florida Health Justice STORIES

    Successful advocacy requires that the public, media, and decision-makers see and hear personal stories illustrating how health law and policy impact individuals and their families.

     

    Given Florida’s large vulnerable populations, the tremendous number of uninsured, the failure to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, the low Medicaid spending for current Medicaid enrollees (47th in the nation), and recent harmful cuts to the state’s Medicaid program, it’s not surprising that vulnerable Floridians experience barriers in accessing care.

    STORIES will share the voices of our fellow Floridians on the state’s major health justice/injustice issues including:

    Medicaid Expansion

    Until the state expands Medicaid coverage, policymakers and the public must continue to hear from Floridians who are suffering physically and financially because they lack health coverage.

    Medicaid Support

    While public support for Medicaid increased following the 2017 fight over ACA repeal and Medicaid caps, this essential program remains at risk in Florida. The public and leaders need to see and hear the stories of individuals and families who rely on Medicaid—from the parents of children with special needs to the families whose loved ones are in a nursing home—to appreciate its significance.

    Access to Care for Seniors

    Despite Florida’s huge number of frail and disabled elderly, there are tremendous barriers to coverage and services for this extremely vulnerable population. Our state leaders and the public need to see the faces and hear the voices of Florida’s seniors and families hurt by the state’s repeal of retroactive Medicaid, and the long waitlist for home and community-based services (HCBS) needed to avoid institutionalization. Even after Florida was sued over the waitlist, the Legislature failed to increase the number of individuals who could receive HCBS or provide necessary funding for the local agencies unable to process applicants in a timely fashion.

    Immigrants who are afraid to seek care or coverage

    The harmful chilling effect of proposed changes to the public charge rule is particularly profound in Florida. While immigrants, even those who have become citizens or obtained a green card, are often afraid to speak out, the project will share first hand “stories” from health care providers, social workers, teachers, and others who witness the fear of families, even citizen families, afraid to seek needed care.

    Project supported by The Florida Bar Foundation