posted on Mar, 31 2010 @ 08:43 AM
I think my state (Mass) has learned its lesson, though it is struggling to fix it. It can get very complicated here, and the reason for that is that
the government does not give all the necessary information to the citizens who are required to have insurance. If the info was freely known, we
wouldn't have many issues.
Such as: Those employed have to be offered insurance via employer when considered full time employees. BUT- there are yearly or semi yearly sign ups,
so you may not be able to be insured right away. In these cases, there is a system called Commonwealth Care, a division of medicaid, that you are
automatically eligible for- NO MATTER your income level. Co-pays are based on a sliding scale, but you have to be covered. You do NOT have to purchase
private insurance here in Mass any longer. The state covers EVERYONE, they just don't let you know that.
Also, income guidelines for eligibility into standard medicaid have been changed, so many who were not eligible before, are now.
When your employer offers you insurance, you have to accept it- BUT, Commonwealth Care will cover any deductible you cannot afford. You have to ask
for it though, and many here do not realize that they have this option.
As for tax time, you must show proof of insurance on your state form, but you have the option of checking off a box that exempts you from any fees if
you are low income, or if you have only had insurance for a portion of the year. With this, you must make sure the next year you are covered all year,
or the fee applies. And they will take the fee out of your return.
Any family with minor children automatically have the children covered, despite income levels. But you have to ask for it. Anyone with chronic
conditions can receive medicaid, even if you do not receive SSI or disability, you only need a letter from your physician. They may make you fight for
it, but they have to comply.
There are many more loopholes and exemptions and aids available in this state, but as I said, it is not info shouted from the rooftops here. But
anyone struggling to have medical insurance in Massachusetts does not need to- they have to cover you, no matter your income. As I said, it is on a
sliding scale, but you do have insurance. I hope this can help anyone in Mass who may not know it, and I can only hope it is done in a similar manner
nationwide, or something less complicated.