People of Northwest Public Radio
Wed September 25, 2013
Inslee Says Healthcare Act Rollout Is On Track
Despite Republican efforts to block the healthcare reform plan known as Obamacare, Washington State Governor Jay Inslee says he’s confident the plan is moving forward.
Speaking today on KUOW Public Radio, Inslee said the state is ready to roll out a major component of the Affordable Care Act. Next week, the state’s online marketplace for health plans will open for enrollment.
"Our state is ready to start October 1. We actually are ready to go. We’re going to push the green button on October 1. That is going to happen, to move forward in a way that will help our economy, grow thousands of jobs, which this plan will in our state, and get up to 1 million people insured in the state of Washington" says Inslee.
According to a recent census report, nearly 1 million people in Washington are without health insurance. A statement from Inslee’s office says half of those people are expected to qualify for low-cost or free insurance.
Census data also shows the number of uninsured people in Washington has crept slightly higher in recent years. About 14 percent of state residents were without coverage last year.
Across the state, the highest rates of uninsured people are in the Eastern Washington counties of Yakima, Franklin and Adams county. There, about one in four people have no health insurance.
Alternately, the highest rates of coverage are in King and Kitsap counties.
Last week, in the other Washington, House Republicans passed a measure that would cancel funds for President Obama’s signature healthcare act. But Senate Democrats say they have enough votes to keep the funding in place.
Copyright 2013 KUOW.