Who needs the Medicaid expansion? It could be the next person you meet

A new report released by the Pennsylvania Health Access Network and FamiliesUSA found that of all the people who would be covered if Pennsylvania expanded Medicaid, roughly 60% of them – 285,000 people – are active in the workforce. They are the people who help us every day. Their work is critical to the state’s economy.

It is easy to assume that none of us know someone who would be affected by this, that we needn’t be involved. But the truth is these people are all around us. We interact with them every day and they provide vital services that most of us could not live without. And they are being let down by their elected representatives, who, it’s worth mentioning, have top-of-the-line health coverage.

Here are just some of the people who you and I know that would be covered under Medicaid if it’s expanded:

  • The tailor who hems your pants and 23,000 others in the production industry.
  • The bus driver who gets you to work and 31,000 others in the transportation industry.
  • The construction workers who built your home and 23,000 others in the construction industry.
  • The cooks and waitstaff that provide you meals and 40,000 others in the food service industry.
  • The assistants who help you at medical appointments and 12,000 others in the health service industry.
  • The cashiers and workers that staff your favorite stores and 33,000 others in the sales industry.
  • The repair people who make sure everything you use works and 25,000 others in the cleaning and maintenance industry.

It seems there is no shortage of individuals who would be positively affected by expanding Medicaid. These people, hardworking citizens that you interact with every day, are one medical mishap away from financial disaster. This hurts not only these workers and their economic security, but also our communities by depriving us all of valuable, needed services.

Meet Theodora, who explains her struggle in the video below.

Given the need, the availability of full federal funding for the first three years, and the fact that all our neighboring states expanded health coverage, it is, frankly, absurd that we have not yet expanded Medicaid here in Pennsylvania. Governor Corbett: it is time to abandon Healthy PA and expand Medicaid now. We owe it to these workers.

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