Meridian, Miss. Greater Meridian Health Clinic and the City of Meridian are partnering together to help more of the city's residents learn about and sign up for insurance through the Affordable Healthcare Act, also known as "Obamacare." Mayor Percy Bland says it's very important for as many Meridianites to have insurance as possible because it will help boost the local economy since so much of it is driven by healthcare.
"We're trying to do all that we can to make sure that the information is there, and we're providing access. I think the most important thing is providing access to our citizens to cover the needs of healthcare. We are a healthcare hub, and this is very important to our citizens that they have health insurance."
Ambetter Insurance, provided through Magnolia Health Plan, is the only insurer available to Lauderdale County residents that are enrolling under Obamacare. Representatives were there this morning signing people up for plans, and say once glitches with healthcare.gov are fixed, they expect to enroll even more people, but the deadline is fast approaching.
Magnolia Healthcare Broker Utheshiea Johnson says, "We can get their information and enroll them on our side. There's actually a deadline of December 15th for their coverage to start January 1st."
CEO of Greater Meridian Health Clinic, Wilbert Jones, believes that the Affordable Care Act will not only give people peace of mind, but also improve healthcare across the country.
"This program will assist them in bringing about an affordable payment every month that they can meet, and they will have the benefit of being able to access healthcare providers, whether it's inpatient or outpatient."
More workshops may be held in the future to get as many people signed up as possible.