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Healthcare Forum Focuses on Changes

Cover Oregon

MEDFORD, Ore. — Fifty chairs were set up in the Medford Library for a public forum Monday night. The forum’s main focus was the new online marketplace for health insurance called Cover Oregon.

Starting October 1, people will be able to go online to coveroregon.com and register for health insurance.   It calculates how much insurance will cost for a person and their family, and will tell them where they can find the insurance coverage that works for them.

On January 1, 2014, everyone will be required to have healthcare insurance under the president’s new healthcare law.   The new law, The Affordable Care Act, aims at making health care insurance cheaper and accessible to everyone.

This also means more people will be going to the doctor on a regular basis.  This is expected to increase wait times to see your regularly scheduled physician, but a member of Oregon Action said the state has been preparing for the increase.

“Oregon has anticipated that, and they have a whole group of people that are working on what we need to have in terms of doctors and nurse, and we are going to have a new kind of health care profession of community workers who are going to be helping some folks assess healthcare,” said Rich Rohde from Oregon Action.

The Oregon Health Plan will also be expanding under the new law.  It will now cover people who earn 138 percent of the federal poverty line.  This means a single person family making $15,000 or less, or a family of four making $32,000 or less will now be eligible for the Oregon Health Plan.