Healthcare remains a concern in Coastal Empire, Lowcountry - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Healthcare remains a concern in Coastal Empire, Lowcountry


Despite Friday's withdrawal on Capitol Hill, health care reform will remain a focus for Republicans. 

People around the Coastal Empire are still looking at the impact it will have here. We sat down with an insurance provider on Friday, who said it brings two problems to the surface. 

He says the first problem is affordability. They want to bring down costs without ripping the rug out from under anyone, which brings us to the second problem: how to keep more than 20 million people insured through Medicaid and individual policies. Bill Lucas owns his own insurance group. He tells us the problems with the Affordable Care Act impact everyone on some level. He says the main problem is that costs under Obamacare are through the roof. It's caused many insurance providers to pull out of the market. Doctors are no longer participating. The Republican bill aims to give more freedom to the insurers. Lucas says the big problem with health insurance costs are the costs of health care. That, he says, is what must change. He says the problems with Obamacare are real, especially with those in the Coastal Empire. 

"About 85 to 90 percent of all the people in Chatham County who have the Affordable Care Act policies through lost their doctors. Think about that. Over 80 percent of people in Chatham, Effingham, Liberty, and Bryan counties lost their doctors this past January," Lucas said. "What we have worries me. What we don't have worries me. What they're thinking about doing worries me, and what they might give us worries me. In the big picture, no one has given us anything because we don't have real answers to fix the problems that have been coming for the last few years, and we have no answers on what will be here two or three years from now."

We spoke with Congressman Buddy Carter two weeks ago. He was confident then that Republicans would rally and pass this bill. Obviously, that didn't happen on Friday. 

"You can't let perfect get in the way of good. This was a good bill. It was not perfect. You have to move forward. Some people wanted the perfect bill and it just does not exist. Unfortunately, that got in the way of good here," Congressman Carter said after the bill was withdrawn. "I do feel like it's important enough to enough people, and I also feel like we all understand that Obamacare is failing as we speak. It is on the brink of collapse and we're going to be faced with this issue no matter what."

Carter tells us he will continue to fight to repeal and replace Obamacare. He believes the support is there to get something done to fix what he calls a failing system. 

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