Keeping the Alexander-Murray health care bill in context

October 28, 2017

Keeping the Alexander-Murray health care bill in context
This article sets the record straight regarding the legislation currently being considered by Congress.

Keeping the Alexander-Murray health care bill in context

As the debate unfolds about the bipartisan bill by Senators Lamar Alexander and Patty Murray to repair the Affordable Care Act marketplaces, the public could be just as confused as they have been about the ACA’s marketplaces. That’s why it’s important to debate it in the right context: It’s aimed at an urgent problem affecting a relatively small sliver of the health insurance system, not all of the ACA and not the entire health system.

The bottom line: It’s a limited measure that will never give conservatives or liberals everything they want.

Who will be affected if insurance companies…

Only those who buy

their own insurance

Only those with

employer plans

Everyone with

health insurance

…choose not to

sell ACA plans




…raise ACA





Don’t know/

no answer

Data: Kaiser Family Foundation Health Tracking Poll conducted Oct. 5-10, 2017; Chart: Chris Canipe / Axios

Reality check: Many people will think it affects their insurance when, in actuality, it will have no impact on the vast majority of Americans who get their coverage outside of the relatively small ACA marketplaces.

The chart based on
our new Kaiser Tracking Poll shows the confusion. Just 23% of the American people know that rising premiums in the ACA marketplaces affect only people who buy their own insurance. More than seven out of 10 wrongly believe rising premiums in the marketplaces affect everyone or people who get coverage through their employer.

The public will be susceptible to spin and misrepresentation of the limited goals of Alexander-Murray: a bipartisan effort to stabilize the marketplaces by funding the cost-sharing reduction subsidies, providing more resources for open enrollment outreach, and expediting state waivers.

President Trump has added to the confusion. He recently pronounced the ACA “dead”, adding, “there is no such thing as Obamacare anymore.” Possibly that’s because he wishes it was dead. More likely, he was referring to the problems in the ACA marketplaces, which he has exaggerated.

Like thinking your whole house is falling down when just a part of the foundation needs shoring up, both he and the American people have an inaccurate picture of where the marketplaces fit in the ACA and where the ACA fits in the health system.

A few facts:

  • There are just 10 million people enrolled in the ACA marketplaces.
  • The law’s larger Medicaid expansion and consumer protections are popular and working well.
  • The far larger Medicare and Medicaid programs and employer based health system combined cover more than 250 million people, and are largely unaffected by developments in the ACA marketplaces.
  • Premiums for the 155 million people who get coverage through their employers rose a very modest 3% in 2017.

Some conservatives in Congress will hold out for repeal, and they’ll resist any legislation that they view as propping up Obamacare. But for everyone else, it’s important to understand the problem and get the facts.

Tags: insurance, ppaca
October 27, 2017 at 07:00PM
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Free Throws for Free Health Care

February 12, 2014

The men of Tau Kappa Epsilon (TKE) fraternity at Wabash College, as part of their philanthropic work, organized a free throw competition which was held Friday, February 7 during the halftime of the Wabash College – Hiram College basketball game. They chose to donate all proceeds to two nonprofit organizations. Dean of Students, Michael Raters competed for Montgomery County Free Clinic, Inc. as his charity, while Visiting Instructor of Chemistry, Gregory Dallinger, competed for St. Jude Children’s Hospital. The winner of the free throw competition (Dean Raters) received 60 percent of the $300 raised by TKE for his charity. The second-place finisher received the other 40 percent. 

Professor Gregory Dallanger with Dean of Student Michael RatersDean Rater’s makes the “Perfect Shot”

Suanne Milligan, Bill Doemel, Zach Haltom, Dr. Janet Rucker

Tau Kappa Epsilon President, Zach Haltom, presents Dean Rater’s “winnings” to Dr. Janet Rucker, President of Montgomery County Free Clinic, Inc. Suanne Milligan, Fundraising Chair and Bill Doemel, Executive Director celebrate the gift with Dr. Rucker. 

The men of TKE are Some Little Giants!

Community Foundation Awards Clinic $45,000 to Hire a Nurse Practitioner

June 28, 2013

This past Thursday, June 27th, the Montgomery County Community Foundation awarded the Dr. Mary Ludwig Free Clinic $45,000 to fund the hiring of a nurse practitioner or advanced practice nurse (APN).  The award was given at the Community Foundation’s grant presentations at the Vanity Theater.  At the presentation over 25 other agencies were recognized for their work in the community.  The ability to now hire an APN will give the clinic the ability to have a continuity of care with patients so that even if they are seeing a different volunteer doctor at each visit they will still have a friendly face in the newly hired nurse practitioner, Doris Bleah.  Assisting Doris Bleah will be Michele Thompson, a local nurse, who will be in charge of scheduling volunteer nurses as well as the day to day running of the clinic.  We would like to thank the Community Foundation for all of their support and ask you to help out by following this link and making any contribution that you can to enable us to make our great community a healthier place to live.


Montgomery County Free Clinic Board Meets for Annual Meeting

June 25, 2013

The annual meeting of the Montgomery County Free Clinic was held on June 18th at the new Dr. Mary Ludwig Free Clinic.  The Free Clinic is located at 816 Mill Street in Crawfordsville.  The Board had the opportunity to tour the new facility which has been under construction for several months.  The clinic includes several examination rooms for medical and dental patients, offices for volunteer physicians, nurse practitioners and dentists, administrative offices and a large public meeting space.  It is anticipated that construction will be completed in July, and that the Free Clinic will begin to see patients sometime in August. 

The Board elected Dr. Janet Rucker President, Candy Royer Vice-President, Chris Amidon Secretary, Keith Mason Treasurer, Dr. John Roberts Chief Medical Officer and Bill Doemel Executive Director.  Other board members include Dr. Mark Truax, Gary Lewis, Gil Tobias, Nancy Sennett, Ann Malott, Morris Mills, Harry Siamas, Chris Amidon, Rebecca Lang, and Suanne Milligan.

The Free Clinic will offer free primary care health and dental services to Montgomery County residents whose household income is at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level.  In addition, patients must not be eligible for Medicaid, Medicare or be covered by private health insurance.  The Free Clinic will continue the good work of the Christian Nursing Service that has provided free health care to Montgomery County residents since 1968.  The Free Clinic will also house the Meals on Wheels Program and will be the new immunization center for Montgomery County.

The Free Clinic will be staffed by an employed nurse practitioner as well as volunteer physicians, nurse practitioners, dentists, nurses and other health care professionals.  In addition, volunteers from the community will fill many administrative and other positions.  Paul Pfledderer is the volunteer coordinator for the clinic.  Anyone interested in volunteering may contact Mr. Pfledderer at or call 362-4992 (leave a short message).  

An open house for the community to tour the Dr. Mary Ludwig Free Clinic is planned for Sunday July 28, 2013 from 1 to 4 p.m.  We encourage you to connect with us on facebook by “liking” our page to stay up to date on our latest achievements and news as well as to view upcoming events for the clinic. 

The Clinic is going GREEN this summer, help us fight off the RED

June 19, 2013

Less than two months until the open house and we are wearing away the RED.  We have reached $88, 000 to date and there is only $206K to go.  If you wish to help us fight the good fight then click on this link to provide a better and healthier future for families in our great community.

Bake it or Buy it to Support the Clinic, 10 AM on Friday, 6/14, in front of Milligan’s Floral Shop

June 11, 2013


This Friday, 6/14, the Wabash Avenue Presbyterian Church will be holding a bake sale in front of Milligan’s Floral Shop starting at 10 AM.  All of the proceeds from the bake sale will go towards the Dr. Mary Ludwig Free Clinic.  So, whether you are in the mood to bake, buy, or both, come out and enjoy some good food for a good cause.

Items needed and to be sold include Pies, Cakes, Cookies, Brownies, Cupcakes, and Breads.  No milk or cream cheese based items (they usually melt!), and be sure to label any baked goods that contain nuts or peanut butter.  Baked goods can be dropped off either Thursday, 6/13, at Wabash Avenue Presbyterian or brought to Milligan’s on the morning of Friday, June 14th. 

We hope to see you there, but if you cannot attend but still wish to help out a great cause please click on this link to see how you can contribute.

Dental Clinic Donation!

April 2, 2013

Many thanks to the Indiana Dental Assocaiton Foundation for their recent donation of $1600 toward supplies for the dental clinic!  This will enable us deliver the best care possible to our clients.   

                                    Dr. Janet Rucker                                             Jay Dziwlik, Executive Director

                             Montgomery County Free Clinic               IN Dental Association Foundation