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Seattle Times letters to the editor

September 17, 2014 at 2:34 PM

Extend charity care to help debt-ridden patients

As someone with medical debt, I find it inexcusable that hospitals are using the gains of Obamacare as an excuse to slash their charity care programs [“Obamacare helps slash hospital charity costs in state,” Local News, Sept. 14].

My husband passed away from pancreatic cancer two years ago as a result of being underinsured. We were never told about charity care in the Franciscan Health System. His debt survived him; I still receive collection-agency calls.

Hospitals receive millions of dollars in tax breaks, thus having a duty to ensure that people’s lives are not ruined financially because they get sick. While hospitals gladly tout the number of people they helped register for Obamacare or the amount they spend on charity care, they don’t show how many eligible patients should receive financial assistance but are not informed of programs. Hospitals should expand charity care.

Toni Potter, Puyallup

Comments | More in Health care | Topics: charity care, Franciscan Health System, health care

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