While Kirk had insurance, he felt a sense of confidence and well-being as he was able to take care of his health care needs.
But seven months ago, Kirk’s income as a part-time meatpacker and stocker at a local grocery store dropped to $500 a month, making him ineligible for a health care marketplace subsidy.
“People are fed up,” Kirk P. exclaimed as he detailed the challenges faced by the uninsured. Kirk is a fifty-three-year-old Miami resident, and he is one of the tens of thousands who have been frustrated in his attempts to obtain health coverage. Like many low wage Florida workers, Kirk does not get insurance through his job. But he was able to get a subsidy in order to purchase a low-cost plan (about $40/month premium) through the Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”) marketplace.
While Kirk had insurance, he felt a sense of confidence and well-being as he was able to take care of his health care needs, including a hip replacement and prescription medication for his high blood pressure. But seven months ago, Kirk’s income as a part-time meatpacker and stocker at a local grocery store dropped to $500 a month.
When his income dropped to below the federal poverty level, his insurance premiums went up to over $200. Kirk literally “fell into the coverage gap,” now too poor to receive ACA subsidies and ineligible for Medicaid coverage in Florida as an adult without children.
Today he relies upon community health organizations to subsidize his prescription medication costs and primary care visits. But having health insurance would change his life, providing him with his old sense of personal assurance that if he needs surgery or hospitalization, he will be able to get it.