Greetings Again From Texas

By Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary, Department of Health & Human Services
Posted December 20, 2013

Greetings again from Texas.  I just had the opportunity to visit the Martin Luther King Jr. Family Clinic which is doing some great work here in Dallas to help Texans learn about their new options under the Affordable Care Act. 

Earlier today, I wrote about our visit to Houston, and mentioned that Texas has the highest rate of uninsured people in the nation. There are, in fact, more uninsured children – almost 1 million -- living in Texas than in any other state. 

We’re in the Lone Star State to meet with folks who are working to change that, and to hear the stories of Texans who are getting covered with affordable health care. 

I wanted to share the stories of a couple of these people who I met today in Dallas:

Misty Parker is a 31 year-old who works with a community-oriented startup company, which does not currently offer insurance.  Misty says that because of the Health Insurance Marketplace, with financial help, she was able to sign up for a Bronze plan for $38 a month.  She had questions, but Misty says she was able to get answers from the call center.

I also met Amanda Waddle, who shared her and her husband Brian’s story about getting covered through the Marketplace.  They both enjoy playing hockey and were concerned about what might happen if they got injured on the ice.

A 26-year-old graduate student, Amanda said she couldn’t afford insurance on the private market.  Brian also didn’t have coverage despite working two jobs as a waiter and a broadcast statistician for the Dallas Stars hockey team. 

Thanks to the choices, competition, and financial help in the Marketplace, Amanda says she and her husband were able to get covered for only $105 a month.  She also signed up for a dental plan for $10 a month.

So I invite you to follow Misty’s and Amanda’s  lead!  You can learn about your new options online at HealthCare.gov or by phone at 1-800-318-2596/TTY 1-855-889-4325.  You can also find help in your community at localhelp.healthcare.gov

You have more than three months, until the end of March to enroll in coverage for 2014.  If you’d like your coverage to begin January 1st, you have until December 23 to sign up.

  • Kathleen

P.S.  Got covered? Share your story here.