NEWS & MEDIA
Georgians for a Healthy Future is frequently cited in news articles about health care issues, ensuring the consumer perspective is heard. Read news stories featuring Georgians for a Healthy Future’s perspective below.
“The public comments are important because they become part of the legal record,” said Laura Colbert, who submitted a letter opposing the proposal on behalf of Georgians for a Healthy Future.
“And so, it is one of the most powerful ways that consumers can express their needs and concerns about what the state is doing related to health care,” she said.
Laura Colbert of Georgians for a Healthy Future said the Medicaid waiver plan “will not work for the large majority of low-income people in the state.” She described the waiver as “insufficient and punitive,” saying the work requirements would reduce enrollment.
Laura Colbert, director of Georgians for a Healthy Future, said, “If there are really 408,000 people who could qualify for coverage and in five years the majority of those people are not expected to be covered, then there’s something wrong with the plan”
“While every additional person who gains coverage is an important victory, this plan leaves too many Georgians uninsured. Georgia leaders should set aside partisan ideas that have failed in other states and instead pursue an evidence-based solution,” said Laura Colbert, Executive Director at Georgians for a Healthy Future. “Study after study demonstrates that Medicaid expansion results in improved health outcomes for adults who get covered, fewer financial struggles and more stable housing for low-income families, and stronger finances for community health centers and rural hospitals. Georgians deserve a healthier, financially vibrant future. Unfortunately, this plan does not move the state in that direction.”
The idea reminded Laura Colbert, the director of Georgians for a Healthy Future, of the same activity requirements that were stymied by federal judges in other states.
“Those plans don’t work for the people that need coverage,” Colbert said. “If there are really 408,000 people who could qualify for coverage and in five years the majority of those people are not expected to be covered, then there’s something wrong with the plan.”
Laura Colbert, executive director of Georgians for a Healthy Future, said imposing work requirements in exchange for Medicaid coverage in other states has resulted in fewer people enrolling in the program.
Opponents say the plan will only cover a sliver of Georgia’s uninsured and could water down insurance plan requirements.
“This plan still leaves thousands of Georgians uninsured,” said Laura Colbert, with Georgians for a Healthy Future. “Our concern is that every Georgian has a pathway to coverage, and this plan does not do that.”
Colbert says work requirements are only a barrier, and there is no date showing that they help get people employment or better-paying jobs.
“The only impact of a work requirement is to disenroll people or keep them from enrolling in the first place,” she said.
But others were quick to caution that the proposal appeared to help insurers more than consumers.
“Under this plan, Georgia families and individuals who want comprehensive health coverage may end up paying more, Georgians will have a more difficult time shopping for insurance, and consumers will be at a disadvantage when selecting the plan that’s right for them,” Laura Colbert, executive director of Georgians for a Healthy Future, said in a statement.
“The administration’s plan tips the balance of power in health care toward insurers and away from consumers,” Colbert said. “Each part of this plan helps insurance companies, while consumers shoulder all the risks.”
Abandoning the website worries consumer advocates, such as Laura Colbert with Georgians For a Healthy Future.
“Healthcare.gov is actually a really important platform. It provides an unbiased central location for people to compare plans across carriers, and there’s no bias or preference about one carrier or another,” she said.
Colbert worries third-party brokers will steer consumers into plans that might not be as comprehensive as what’s available on the exchange.
Some advocates worry that customers might assume they’re purchasing plans that cover a broad array of health benefits when they’re not.
“Some of these plans that don’t offer full essential health benefits, their marketing is very confusing,” said Laura Colbert, the director of Georgians for a Healthy Future. “I would worry a lot that consumers would buy a plan that doesn’t actually work for them.”