Nearly one in five Georgians lacks health insurance, the 6th highest rate in the country. Among those without insurance are an estimated 534,000 adults living at or below 100% of the federal poverty line.

Given the significant need for increased access to healthcare, Georgia’s decision not to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, and expansion’s long-term unsustainability, it is imperative that viable alternatives for providing healthcare to this portion of the population are identified and implemented.

Today, Georgia Center for Opportunity released a report that adds new ideas and solutions to many of the state’s healthcare challenges. The report, titled Increasing Access to Quality Healthcare for Low-Income Uninsured Georgians, outlines challenges to Georgia’s healthcare system and recommends several policies to start addressing the problems.

The report’s key recommendations include:

  • Providing state government support for Georgia’s charity clinics
  • Expanding telemedicine
  • Modernizing nurse practitioner laws and regulations
  • Reinstating the state sales tax exemption for charity clinics
  • Replacing lost federal funding for safety-net hospitals

Implementation of these policies offers a strong foundation for expanding care to individuals in need and will ensure that more Georgians have access to affordable healthcare, leading to better outcomes for individuals and reducing the cost of uncompensated care.

Over the next few weeks, we will post a series of blogs that highlight different sections of the report including an overview of the state’s uninsured population and healthcare safety-net, an analysis of many of the state’s healthcare challenges, and an in-depth look at the recommended policies.

View the full report here: Increasing Access to Quality Healthcare for Low-Income Uninsured Georgians,