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Gov. Beshear Defends Obamacare in New York Times Op-Ed

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear took to The New York Times for an op-ed titled, "My State Needs Obamacare. Now."

The Democrat serving his second term as leader of the Commonwealth didn't mince words about the Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act, the benefits of which will be available in January 2014 in Kentucky through the new "kynect" program and Medicaid expansion.

The Governor writes:

For the first time, we will make affordable health insurance available to every single citizen in the state. Right now, 640,000 people in Kentucky are uninsured. That’s almost one in six Kentuckians.

Lack of health coverage puts their health and financial security at risk.

They roll the dice and pray they don’t get sick. They choose between food and medicine. They ignore checkups that would catch serious conditions early. They put off doctor’s appointments, hoping a condition turns out to be nothing. And they live knowing that bankruptcy is just one bad diagnosis away.

Furthermore, their children go long periods without checkups that focus on immunizations, preventive care and vision and hearing tests. If they have diabetes, asthma or infected gums, their conditions remain untreated and unchecked.

For Kentucky as a whole, the negative impact is similar but larger — jacked-up costs, decreased worker productivity, lower quality of life, depressed school attendance and a poor image.

The Affordable Care Act will address these weaknesses.

Read the full piece: The New York Times