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Letter: I'm one of 40,000

Posted: December 16, 2013 - 12:03am

I am one of the 40,000 Alaskans who will not have health insurance coverage due to Gov. Sean Parnell’s decision to not expand Medicaid. In response to his desire to “know more about this category (of people),” I am in reasonably good health, remain physically active, and have been covered by health insurance for decades.

This year I cared for my elderly father. I wouldn’t change it for the world because of what it meant for my father and me, but it resulted in reduced income and a loss of health insurance.

If Gov. Parnell wants to oppose “Obamacare,” that’s certainly his choice. If Gov. Parnell wants to take a longer view and form a Medicaid Reform Advisory Group to address gaps in Alaskans’ access to health care, terrific! But to intentionally leave a category of Alaskans uninsured for several years, with no immediate or temporary solution, until Medicaid revisions are implemented in 2016 at the soonest, his plan seems negligent, at best.

I am just one voice, but am joined by many with varied points of view, including members of the AARP, Alaska Hospital and Nursing Home Association, Alaska Chamber of Commerce, Anchorage Chamber of Commerce, Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium, Alaska Federation of Natives, Anchorage NAACP, and Anchorage Faith and Action/Congregations Together. We all want Gov. Parnell to find a way that is equitable for all Alaskans to be covered as soon as possible.

Shosh Seligman

Juneau

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