Letters to the Editor

Close healthcare gap

With the elections over, it’s time to refocus on access to healthcare.

The Florida Legislature has turned away substantial federal funding that could have paid for healthcare coverage for uninsured individuals in our community caught in the Florida coverage gap.

These are the people who can’t qualify for Medicaid, but don’t make enough money to qualify for subsidies that would help them purchase health insurance through the federal exchange.

Without insurance, these individuals typically delay seeking medical care until their conditions are severe enough to land them in the hospital.

The rest of us ultimately pay the cost for uninsured people who show up in emergency rooms, through our taxes and increased healthcare costs.

For the state to accept funds to close the gap is just common sense.

We can reduce the uncompensated costs that burden Florida hospitals and taxpayers, and allow people to go to their doctor instead of the emergency room when they get sick.

It’s time for the legislature to put people before politics in decisions on healthcare.

Philip K. Stoddard,

mayor, South Miami

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