To The Daily Sun,
If you've ever been in a situation where you struggled to pay a medical bill or wondered whether you could afford to see a doctor, you know how stressful it can be. The rest of us can only imagine.
That's why I'm asking our state Legislature to help Lakes Region families and many other New Hampshire families by utilizing the federal funds available to our state to extend health coverage to more Granite Staters.
The federal government will pay 100 percent of the costs for the first three years and gradually phase down to 90 percent over seven years. If the federal contribution ever changes after that, New Hampshire can withdraw — we have that in writing from federal officials.
Many of our day care teachers, store clerks, landscapers and home health aides cannot afford health insurance. We now have the opportunity to provide them with affordable care so they can stay healthy without bankrupting their families.
In addition, the state will benefit from the estimated $2.4 billion in federal funds over the next seven years that would flow to clinics and hospitals — and lead to new jobs and more family dollars to spend at local businesses. Improved access to critically needed services like mental health and substance abuse treatment will create new savings for state and local budgets.
Please join me urging our lawmakers in Concord to move quickly to accept the federal funds and get more people covered now.
Susan E Smith