Edward is a retired veteran who has been on Medicaid for over 8 years. Although Edward was able to get medical care from the Veterans Affairs (VA) hospital, he states that receiving treatment takes a lot of time.
“Medicaid has been a great help to me. When I had a lot of problems with the VA as a veteran, Medicaid came in so I was able to see doctors and get medication. Sometimes you have to wait months to see a doctor at the VA but you just can’t wait. Medicaid saw that I get doctor visits when I need them and medications right away with no out-of-pocket expenses.”
Having to not wait for the VA to approve medical treatment because he is able to rely on his Medicaid has given Edward time back in my life. “It has really helped me. I don’t have to sit around to see a doctor for a month to two months. Most of the time I am able to see the doctor the next week or the very next day.” Edward is able to utilize his freed-up time to volunteer in his community or at the local veteran’s shelter. His mission in life is to focus on helping God’s people.
Jeremaine is thankful to be receiving healthcare coverage from Medicaid. Recently, he had to have an emergency surgery that Medicaid fully covered. “Last week I had a big surgery, stayed in the hospital a week, and had a kidney removed.” Jeremaine was informed that he had tumors on one of his kidneys and needed surgery in order to protect his health. Although the surgery was a success, shortly after he was informed that he would need to do dialysis three times per week until his kidney functioning returned back to normal. Soon Jeremaine will find out whether he can stop dialysis treatment or whether he will have to continue it for the next three years until he can qualify for a kidney transplant.
This was an unexpected life change for Jeremaine. He states that not being able to work due to how physically taxing dialysis is on his body and also the risk of infection has impacted his ability to provide as a husband and father. Jermaine is a father of four school-aged children and has been mentally struggling with his inability to take care of different things for his children. Currently, he is receiving partial disability but it is not able to cover all of his financial obligations. Jermaine states that he has to pay family and friends money to take him back and forth to dialysis treatment, which is costly due to him going at least 12 times a month. He also has to cover his rent, utilities, and out-of-pocket medication expenses. Jeremaine has to pay over $200.00 each month on medication because all of his prescription slots are full. “I have to pay for some medicines because now I run out of space on my card.” The costs of his medicines have caused Jeremaine to forgo purchasing other things that his family has needed.
“Sometimes my medicines are too high which means I don’t have as much money for other things we need.”
Jeremaine is waiting for his test results to come back to see if he will have to continue with dialysis treatment or whether he will be able to return back to his normal life. He is looking forward to the opportunity to be able to work again and provide more for his family.
KaChasity is a new mother to twin girls. She is thankful for Medicaid because “it’s been really good.” Recently, KaChasity saw that her twins were not feeling well and she was able to take them in for treatment.
“They got an appointment immediately, were seen, and got medicines at no cost.”
KaChasity understands the importance of medical coverage because she was diagnosed as a child with juvenile arthritis. As a Medicaid recipient, she was able to receive treatment through the Arkansas Children’s Hospital.
Throughout KaChasity’s pregnancy with the twins, she was diagnosed with Bell’s Palsy. “When I got it, they told me what it was and gave me medication.” KaChasity was not able to take the medication prescribed because they made her sick. After giving birth, she has attempted to receive treatment again for the condition. Unfortunately, her current primary care physician has ignored her concerns and has recommended she “wait it out.” Living in rural Arkansas, she does not have a lot of provider options to receive care. KaChasity stated that she will continue to advocate for her health concerns because she is still experiencing pain in her face and she is worried about whether she may now have nerve damage that may not be reversible. She also wants to be able to have her old smile back. KaChasity has been unable to fully smile since her diagnosis.
KaChasity is currently going to school for early childhood development. She has always had a passion for working with children and grew up helping to care for her 8 nieces and nephews. After graduation, KaChasity hopes to be able to work at the same daycare facility that her daughters will attend.
Shirley has received healthcare coverage from Medicaid for over twenty years. She is thankful that she has never been denied services. Although Shirley is covered by both Medicaid and Medicare, she stated that “sometimes it is hard to pay the fee for medicines that the doctor wants me to take.” Although Shirley pays reduced amounts for her prescriptions, the cost is sometimes too much since she is on a fixed income.
“I can’t always pick up my medication because I always have to pay a fee even though I have both Medicaid and Medicare.”
Shirley just wishes that all her prescribed medications could be covered. During her free time, Shirley volunteers at a local clothing donation center. She enjoys being able to give back to those in need.