Medicaid access is crucial to rural health care

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Montana’s scenic landscape has always been a treasure to its rural residents. When it comes to receiving health care, however, our rural residents face a lot of hurdles. Thankfully, Medicaid’s coverage extends well into the communities that stretch across our great state, providing them with accessible and innovative coverage for the healthcare they need.

Medicaid is able to deliver cost-saving coverage to nearly 70 million Americans nationwide — including more rural Montana residents than you might think and over 2,300 adults alone in Lincoln County. At the Montana Primary Care Association, 40 percent of the patients served at Montana’s community health centers receive coverage through Medicaid. This program has proven invaluable to households across the state that may otherwise have difficulties accessing care.

As innovation and technology within Medicaid develops, it is more important than ever for Montana’s residents to recognize the value of the program. Medicaid works to innovatively improve access to care and continues to expand the number of patients with access to healthcare providers. Additionally, because it assists with transportation services, Medicaid has removed some of the barriers surrounding trips to the receive both preventive and chronic care.

Many rural communities across Montana have benefited from enhanced access to health care thanks to Medicaid. Hopefully people understand the critical role Medicaid plays in the state’s healthcare system.

Stacey Anderson is policy director of the Montana Primary Care Association.

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