MILWAUKEE (WITI) — An Affordable Care Act forum in Milwaukee on Saturday, October 26th packed the St. Matthews C.M.E. Church with community members looking for information and clarification.
“I have to find new insurance and I’m not sure which one to go to because there are so many,” said Marianyeliz Colon-Vega.
The forum helped break down President Obama’s new healthcare plan and explained the options to the African-American and Latino communities.
The Affordable Care Act aims to address inequities and increase access to quality, affordable health coverage while focusing on prevention and wellness.
“We have a disparity on individuals that can’t afford health insurance and especially for younger people, populations that haven’t had access to health insurance for so long they’ve been surviving still going to work while sick,” said County Supervisor David Bowen.
Bowen says the county has invested in the cause financially and emotionally and the new plan is having a huge impact.
“Last month the county board passed almost $750,000 to invest to make sure people get signed up for the Affordable Care Act,” Bowen said.
Chairwoman of Community Brainstorming, Dr. Pamela Malone, says she believes the health care exchange will have a positive rippling effect.
“When you improve physical health and mental health and emotional health, I think you will improve education, I think you will improve employability, I think that you improve the whole person, which in turn adds to the community,” said Dr. Malone.
The city says it wants to help get as many individuals affordable health care as possible. Bowen says there are about 17,000 people in Milwaukee County alone that need to be signed up.