By JULIE MINDA
When Lisa Morris of Corpus Christi, Texas, received her insurance renewal notice in the fall, she was crestfallen: Rates on the plan she purchased on healthcare.gov had risen considerably — and even with premium subsidies, her monthly bill would climb from $100 to $250 per month. She couldn't afford it.
A patient of CHRISTUS Health's charity clinic system, Morris, age 48, called a CHRISTUS enrollment help line; and an insurance expert helped her enroll in CHRISTUS' silver plan, on the federal insurance exchange created through the Affordable Care Act. Morris qualifies for significant premium subsidies with that plan, too.
Her new premium is $70 and she has a $100 annual deductible.
When Morris learned she could afford insurance, she told the CHRISTUS insurance specialist, "God bless you, you've made my day."
Morris told Catholic Health World that she needs insurance because she has a kidney condition associated with her multiple sclerosis. She is not taking medications for her multiple sclerosis at the present time. She is unemployed but does not qualify for disability aid. Her husband is retired and has Medicare health coverage.
Morris said she rarely goes to the doctor. Having insurance through the exchange is a safety net for her, she said, in case her multiple sclerosis or her kidney problems worsen. She also may investigate new treatment options for these conditions, now that her insurance costs have been reduced so dramatically, she said.
Morris said she anticipates there will be changes to health insurance under the new political landscape in the U.S. She said she hopes that coverage will be preserved for her and others like her.
She said the insurance "definitely has been a blessing from the Lord."
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