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Letter: Measure 101 will benefit residents who rely on Medicaid

Published on December 15, 2017 5:45PM

Last changed on December 15, 2017 5:46PM

Families living in our rural communities deserve consistent access to quality health care. Without Measure 101, Medicaid funding would be slashed, negatively impacting the health of our friends and neighbors — and our local economy.

Here in Union County, 27.6 percent of our residents rely on Medicaid for access to health care. To put it another way, that’s enough people to form the second-largest town in our county. Medicaid is a critical resource for rural families and communities and Measure 101 protects coverage for thousands of rural Oregonians.

Between 2013 and 2015, “Oregon’s rural uninsured rate fell by 51 percent,” according to a voter’s pamphlet statement submitted by rural hospitals and health care providers across the state. We should build on that success to keep all of us healthy and stabilize costs. We can’t go back to a time when people waited too long to go the doctor and ended up in the emergency room, or never even made it to the hospital. Our friends and neighbors should not be put in that position.

Where you live should not determine the level of care you receive, or if you are able to receive care. That’s why I’m voting yes on Measure 101 this January.

Rebecca Hartman

La Grande


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