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By David Knopf/Richmond News
On Jan. 10, Barbara Chisler stepped out of a Direct Transportation vehicle and learned why health insurance can be a good thing.
“Friday morning when I got off the transport bus, I slipped and fell,” said Chisler, who lives in Vibbard. “That makes you think.”
Chisler, 62, was bruised and sore, but fortunately wasn’t injured in her fall on the icy surface.
But had she been, any medical attention would’ve been covered by insurance she acquired with a stroke of luck at www.healthcare.gov, the federal Affordable Care Act Web site.
Chisler works in the office at Missouri Valley Community Action Agency in Richmond, one of five Ray Countains employed by Experience Works, a grant-funded organization. She works 18 hours a week, earning $7.50 an hour, a job she enjoys that supplements her Social Security check.
Chisler presently doesn’t her own car, and depends on Direct Transit to get to and from work.
As a low-income applicant who doesn’t smoke, Chisler qualified for a federal tax credit -– also referred to as a subsidy – that provided full coverage through Blue Cross/Blue Shield for just $50 a month. The monthly payment is still a strain on her tight budget, but Chisler says she’ll wait and see if she can cut a few corners here and there to accommodate it long-term.
“It’s just an expense in my budget I didn’t expect,” she said. “I may not have enough money for groceries or something else I thought I needed.”
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Ray County residents with questions or seeking assistance in registering can call Julie Bartley directly at 1-877-344-3572 or email her at julieb@HCCNetwork.org. Residents can also seek help from Michelle Zwiers or Diane Dehn as their certified enrollment counselors at 816-776-5577 or email Zwiers at firstname.lastname@example.org.