Coronavirus threatens to widen healthcare gap between red and blue states

Nation/World
Protesters ask for Rep. Carlos Curbelo to explain his vote on the Affordable Care Act in front of his office on August 3, 2017, in Miami, Florida. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Protesters ask for Rep. Carlos Curbelo to explain his vote on the Affordable Care Act in front of his office on August 3, 2017, in Miami, Florida. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Jenny Morones and Courtney Marrs are both working mothers. Both labor to raise three children on low incomes. Both fled abusive relationships.

But because Morones lives in California — a state that expanded its safety net through the Affordable Care Act — she has health coverage. It protected her from financial ruin last year when a severe infection put her in the hospital.

Marrs lives in Texas, which refused to expand Medicaid through the healthcare law. That’s left her and hundreds of thousands of other Texans uninsured. Lack of coverage has forced Marrs to forgo asthma inhalers and dental work on a molar she said was broken in a domestic dispute. “I’ve been living on Orajel,” she said.

Regional differences have long been a hallmark of American healthcare. But the gap between blue and red states has yawned wider in the 10 years of political battles that followed passage of the 2010 health law, often called Obamacare.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.

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