Medicaid & Health Resource Drop-in Hours

Have you been cut off of Medicaid, or are you concerned that you may become ineligible? Are you on Medicare and unable to afford a supplement? Are you concerned about going into medical debt?

The Vermont Workers’ Center is hosting drop-in informational hours on Feb. 6 from 3:00-5:30 PM in the Brooks Memorial Library Community Meeting Room, 224 Main St, Brattleboro. All are welcome to stop in to get updated about Medicaid, Medicare Savings Programs, and other health care resources. You can find out about your rights in this process and review any communications you have received about Medicaid or other health insurance.

Medicaid Bait and Switch

One of the best things that happened as a result of the COVID pandemic was the rules relaxation and resulting expansion of this country’s Medicaid program. There also were a number of other factors that contributed to a major increase in Medicaid enrollment. The bottom line is that this country finally started to move in the right direction with its Medicaid program.

According to the National Library of Medicine, “From 2017 to 2019, national Medicaid enrollment declined by 2.6%. The COVID-19 pandemic reversed this course abruptly, with Medicaid enrollment increasing by 15.5% from February 2020 relative to April 2021. While existing research points to massive job loss as one primary driver of this increased enrollment, this study found that approximately three-fourths of Medicaid enrollment growth could be traced to declines in the rate of disenrollment relative to 2019, with only one quarter explained by higher rates of new enrollment during the March to October study period.”

Too Big To Fail?

Three years ago Vermont started an experiment to try to improve the quality of health care and to lower costs. A for-profit entity called One Care was created and, from the start, the organization’s complexity and lack of transparency has been an issue.

Those problems surfaced in a recent public hearing before the Green Mountain Care Board, the entity that has regulatory control over One Care. One Care is proposing a budget of $1.43 billion. Those funds come from insurers such as Medicare and Medicaid and private insurers and are then funneled directly to hospitals and providers.

Meeting About Medicaid

Anyone concerned about changes to Medicaid is invited to a meeting on May 22 to learn about ways that Medicaid is under attack and what we can do to preserve and expand it. The meeting will take place from 6:00-7:00 pm at the Root Social Justice Center, 28 Williams St., Brattleboro. Doors open at 5:30 for light refreshments. The Root is handicap accessible, nut free and fragrance free. The meeting is sponsored by the Vermont Worker’s Center. For more info, or to request a ride or childcare, contact or (802) 257-4436.