Community Post

Why you should go to Garfield Community Ctr. on Sat.

Health insurance could save Ben Smith’s life. And maybe yours, too.

Ben Smith of Seattle was one of the first to enroll under the new health law.

Ben Smith was one of the first to enroll under the new health law.

Smith was struggling to make ends meet and couldn’t afford his own insurance, despite a heart condition. Then, a brain aneurysm sent him to Harborview hospital. Now, he’s out of work and uninsured, leaving him vulnerable if he has complications.

That’s why the Central Area resident was one of the first to sign-up with Washington Healthplanfinder.

Finally, affordable health insurance is available, without fear of discrimination, even if you have a “pre-existing condition.”

Still, enrolling might seem daunting, if you don’t have good internet access, or don’t like the idea of signing up by yourself using a website.

One of the best opportunities for anyone on the Hill or in the Central Area is this Saturday, October 5, from 2-5pm at Garfield Community Center.  A team of In-Person Assisters will be joined by representatives from insurance plans, all under one roof.

If you have questions about how this system works, or want help understanding the insurance choices in the new online marketplace, assisters can walk you through the details – and even complete your enrollment all at once. Translators will be on hand, too, for anyone who speaks Spanish, Somali, Vietnamese or Chinese.

This is a good time to get personal attention, as people are still hearing about the new system.  For anyone who signs up before December 23, medical coverage begins on January 1, 2014.

Nearly 70,000 adults in Seattle don’t have health insurance. That’s leaving them vulnerable not only to sickness and injuries, but it’s a threat to their financial health as well.  Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon to have to choose between paying for rent or for medical bills.

If you can’t make it Saturday, the City of Seattle and Public Health – Seattle & King County have teamed up for smaller “in-person” enrollment events around the city in coming months, many of them at public libraries.

Ben Smith told his story to Governor Jay Inslee and King County Executive Dow Constantine, on Tues. Oct. 1, 2013:

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4 thoughts on “Why you should go to Garfield Community Ctr. on Sat.

  1. One thing that is always missed is the impact of uninsured people on public health. Their only option, besides sporadic free clinics and such is the emergency room. That takes resources away from people who are there with serious health problems and only stabilizes the uninsured patient, seldom addressing the underlying problem.

    In the case of an epidemic, or other serious public health crisis, not only are the uninsured a further burden on the system, they are sitting ducks for whatever it is that is making people sick. Since most of the uninsured are actually working, they can spread disease in their workplace.

    It’s great to see the ACA coming on-line, but the real solution will be universal coverage, with the insurance companies out of the picture.

      • Hello people. This relates to the biggest political change since Vietnam and clearly will have an impact on the CD.

        No comments? This is the conversation of the decade. How many of you will now have a chance at insurance? How many of you have recieved notices from Group Health that your rates are doubling?

        There are very large positive and negative impacts occuring to people we know – right now. The ACA is having very real and personal impacts on lot of people. Not me yet, but, probably soon, unless my employer turns out to be far more gracious and giving than I have come to expect. Though, it is a heck of a good job. Still – they are normally very abrupt about benefit changes and reductions.

  2. I can certainly agreee that the insurance scam health care system is a detriment to health and the economy. At the same time I am very hesitant to support a society that is dependent on government for a life time of basic needs. I believe that the government has eliminated the concept of personal responsibility in any form.

    That all said – doctors, hospitals, insurors, etc are so grossly irresponsible that I wont fight against ACA (though I will fight my urge to do fight it). I have had to deal with a few things in the last several years, and each and every time fealt that the system was a scam. Even though I have reasonable insurance and enough in my HSA to pay the bills – I still found the billing, the prices and “discounts for insurance” to be dispicably complicated and misleading. So convoluted that they must be dishonest and inherently criminal.

    Furthermore, though I have had some good service and result from surgical specialists, the rest of the medical scam seems pointless and/or harmful. Pointless tests designed to skim money – especially things like cholesterol and other tests that should be targetted to people who are likely to need them. It seems to disappoint doctors when my blood work comes back in normal range. I will only do the tests every five years now, not annually.

    And just try to find a decent psychologist. What a joke. I does make me feel better when I see how troubled and worthless psychologists and psychiatrists are. I can get a little depressed now and then and would appreciate some assistance in coaching or learning more productive behaviors. But these idiots head right to the pills. The pills zap every ounce of creativity or productive thought, and, after running their course, don’t provide any postive result. Bottom line is – the medical profession is full of idiots with really bad ideas that they inflict on people seeking help.

    I talk to alot of fat people, and their doctors never tell them they are fat and to loose weight. Interestingly mine does, and we are talking about 10 pounds. It’s the only thing he can find on me. Actually, with is blood test and cholon checking scams, I’m defecting yet again to see if I can find a decent doctor that has good ideas.

    I say these things to provide another angle on the system. It does need to be fixed. But, I do fear the growing number of people that are entirely dependant on goverment for life. We need to tread carefully and find ways to assure self reliance, personal responsibility, and productive citizens. Even if they are a little bit nuts.