Letter: Medicaid cuts are hurting Iowans

Everyone is for choice. Everyone wants the opportunity to choose food, clothes, housing, religion, spouses, barbers or beauticians. Many choices are driven by affordability. More money affords more choices.

Should health care be driven by affordability? Should income be the determining factor for health care options? Shouldn’t everyone have the opportunity to choose doctors, dentists or from other health care options?

If only every voter, especially our legislators, were limited to health care through Medicaid for one year.

Our foster daughter had the same dentist for 25 years. She is disabled and receives Medicaid. Now, Iowa Medicaid covers only two dental practices in Dubuque. Continuing with her dentist would be out-of-pocket, which she can’t afford. She is poor, relying on Social Security and minimal work income, both spent mostly on housing, staffing, food, clothes and transportation. After expenses, she has a small amount each month to choose occasional restaurant treats or activities.

Luckily, she has few medical issues compared with many other disabled Iowans. A local special needs preschooler with multiple health care providers had to change all providers, a heartache for her parents, because of recent decisions by Iowa Medicaid. She’s one example of multitudes across the state with no health care choices.

Many disabled, special needs individuals, without work to supplement their Social Security, have even fewer choices for anything beyond basic needs. Making health care choices would be an unimaginable luxury.

Some U.S. and Iowa legislators want to slash Medicaid again. For the least living among us, tell them no.

Mary Coan


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