Health Care Town Hall Meetings
Photo: Video by nbc26.com
CREATED Sep. 5, 2013
GREEN BAY-- State health care agencies are touring Wisconsin to answer questions about health care reform. Department of Health Services and Commissioner of Insurance were in Green Bay and Appleton today hosting town hall meetings. Dozens showed up to the Green Bay meeting to find out more about how the new laws will affect them.
One contentious issue is the cost of insurance for those who will be required to buy it. Wisconsin's Office of Commission of Insurance projects insurance premiums will rise as much as 50% for some age groups.. That is a statistic that supporters of the Affordable Health Care Act strongly dispute.
About 60 people showed up for the town hall meeting at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College to learn more about how the law known as “Obama Care” works.
"A lot about the rates, where the rates are going, and a lot of concerns about plan changes what do I need to know going forward," said J.P. Wieske of the Office of Commissioner of Insurance.
Outside the college, Democrats argue health care reform is already working and they say the recent cost estimates showing premiums could rise as much as 50% on average are misleading.
"It doesn't show that this is a whole new buying experience, here in Brown County you will have insurance companies you did not have a year ago to really compare with," said Kevin Kane of Citizen Action of Wisconsin.
“The numbers are the numbers, they are what they are, we would have much preferred lower numbers, the big point is when October first rolls around people can see what the rates actually are and we just don't want them to be surprised, “said Wieske.
Governor Walker opposes Obama care and says health care costs will rise in the stateut the actual costs to consumers remains to be seen.
We reached out to the governor's office, which referred us to the OCI for comment.
The state's insurance exchange marketplace will be online and available for purchase on October 1st.