Here in Arizona, the state subsidized “Kids Care for Parents” health coverage program is ending this week. Hundreds of Arizonans will lose their state subsidized health coverage. The “Kids Care for Parents” program is being cut from the state budget and lawmakers hope to save about $7 million a year. Sounds just like every other health-care horror story, doesn’t it?
But people DO have other options when they lose their health coverage. KGUN News in Tucson reports on just such an option. The Pima County Access Program (not to be confused with Arizona’s Medicaid System, AHCCCS) provides an interesting alternative.
What is the Pima County Access Program (PCAP)? Program Director Michal Goforth describes the program this way;
“If you could think about a medical discount program for the uninsured, it’s like Costco. You buy a membership and you receive highly discounted prices”. And what you get for a 40 dollar annual membership may surprise you. This non-profit team of about 10 employees who negotiates with local hospitals and doctors to lower prices on procedures and set caps on medical expenses. “I’m telling you that this is a very creative program in our community,”Goforth said.
PCAP utilizes the services of local medical centers like El Rio and Marana Health Services. PCAP has contracts with the county and local hospitals to perform health screenings. They are also a traditional non-profit organization, so they also receive donations. They are also expected to receive some federal funding in the near future.
So despite what the agenda driven politicians tell you, there are other options out there. You might have to do a bit of work to find them. Is this the final answer to the challenges that we all face when it comes to affordable health coverage? The issue is too complex to find a one-size-fits-all solution. But this is a good place to start.
Kudos to KGUN news for doing their due diligence on this story and finding some real world solutions, sans the political machine.
Please check out PCAP at www.pcap.cc or call them at (520) 694-0418.