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LETTERS

LETTERS: Time to expand Medicaid in Texas; please save Cameron House history

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Art Center

More than a century old, the Cameron House is facing likely demolition.

Expand Medicaid

More than two-thirds of Texans support Medicaid expansion. These Texans voice valid concerns, especially those living in rural communities.

Across the United States, rural hospitals and medical facilities have been the hardest hit by individuals who are uninsured. Texas has a very low earnings bar for qualification to receive Medicaid. The health detriments those who are uninsured suffer are devastating.

Uninsured patients often cannot access preventive health care due to exorbitant costs. Thus, early detection and minimally invasive treatments are not an option. Without early intervention, medical issues which could be treated at a lower cost to patients, physicians, hospital systems — and ultimately taxpayers, if the cost is left unpaid — become astronomical bills. As the uninsured patient continues to become more ill, the cost associated with his/her care increases. This is devastating in rural communities.

For a rural hospital, unmanaged cholesterol can lead to heart attack or stroke and burden the local and state community with much larger bills than if the patient had access to a general physician. A general physician could prescribe medication to manage the individual’s cholesterol and monitor progress. However, without insurance, a routine visit to a physician can cost a patient $150-$300 without laboratory testing, vaccinations or prescriptions. Weighed against the extremely low earnings bar to qualify for Medicaid — $4,000 a year for a family of three — it becomes evident that for many these visits are unattainable.

This extremely low bar has led to Texas leading the nation in uninsured patients. In the wake of COVID-19, Gov. Greg Abbott’s comment that Medicaid is not meant for “able-bodied adults who can and should get health care through an employer” comes at a time when people lost their job unforeseeably. Many those out of insurance would not qualify for Medicaid; however, health care needs were at an all-time high.

Adria Johnson, Crawford

Save all you can

An earnest request to Waco’s powers to be: Please recycle as much as possible from the historic Cameron summer home now slated to be razed due to costs of repair [“Cost scuttles Cameron House plan,” Nov. 22] — so much history and beauty from Waco’s earlier days.

I loved this building from the first day l saw it back in the 1970s, and l am sad at the thought of losing it. I could imagine the stories both happy and sad contained within its walls. In fact, l could feel that energy, so please do what you can to preserve articles of this past beauty. Perhaps even make items available to the public (both rich and poor) for their own homes’ enhancement. Thank you.

P.S.: l am not a native-born Texan, but one who values history — of which there is a lot, even in Waco.

Nancy Marquis, Waco

The 101-year old Cameron House on the edge of Waco's McLennan Community College campus may be in its final days.

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