Two local women share healthcare experiences as Obamacare open enrollment ends

COLUMBUS, Ga — What very likely could have been the last open enrollment period for Americans to sign up for insurance under the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare, has ended.

Insure Georgia made a final push to help people in our area get insured and answer any questions they had regarding coverage.  News 3 was there, and we talked to two Valley area women facing challenges with healthcare.   Despite the uncertainty of the future, they remain optimistic about what will happen under the Trump Administration.

Cynthia Smith and Courtney Spenrath have more in common than just being related.  They also are a couple of professional women who had thriving jobs, but circumstances they could never have predicted nor prevented halted their careers and their lives.

“A student who was doing 90 miles per hour and texting, lost control, lost his phone, lost control of his vehicle, and hit us head-on,” says Courtney Spenrath, who at the time of the wreck was a third grade teacher.

“I cannot use that shoulder like I use to, and it’s nerve damage and everything,” says Cynthia Smith, whose shoulder is so badly injured, and her activities so severely restricted, she has trouble finding work.

Right now, Smith is insured under the Affordable Care Act, commonly referred to as Obamacare.  She says it has saved her life because she would not be able to afford her medicines without it.

“I was able to get my insulin for $25 dollars where its regular price is $700 something,” says Smith.

Currently, Spenrath is without a job or insurance.

“I never thought I would have to be out of insurance. I never thought that I would have to qualify for Obamacare, and I can’t even qualify for Obamacare because I don’t have an income,” says Spenrath.

Melissa Camp, Director of Navigation with Insure Georgia, says that even though changes are likely on the horizon for the national healthcare program under the Trump Administration, people should not panic.

“We are confident the New Administration is going to make changes that will benefit, not just Georgia citizens, but all the citizens of the United States of America,” says Camp.

Both Spenrath and Smith agree. They are hopeful for the future and remain optimistic President Trump can offer a solution that benefits everyone.

At the same time, Smith says it is very important to remember we should not judge our neighbors who do not have easy access to healthcare.

“Don’t think nobody is above getting hurt on the job or having some loss,” says Smith.  “The people who don’t like the insurance because they are well, they never know what tomorrow is going to bring because it [hard times] will knock on your door someday, if you live long enough.”

Camp reminds everyone that Insure Georgia has no political slant.  Its only mission is to make sure that all Georgians have improved health and wellbeing.

In addition, Camp says that Insure Georgia remains a resource for anyone with questions and concerns.  You can access the organization’s website or call 1-866-988-8246.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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