Just Don't Get Sick: Access to Health Care in the Aftermath of Welfare Reform

By Karen Seccombe; Kim A. Hoffman | Go to book overview

Chapter 3
Insurance Coverage

Vicky had been difficult to reach for her interview. It was clear she was a very busy woman and that time given to us for an interview meant time away from more important and pressing aspects of her life. Despite this, we made arrangements to meet on one of her days off from work on a blistering hot July afternoon. Her small, ocean-colored ranch house was located in a Portland metropolitan neighborhood that, despite its pleasant appearance, had long been known for its share of crime and depressed property values.

Vicky is a thirty-nine-year-old African American mother of three. When she greeted us at her front door for her first interview, we were immediately drawn to her hospitable face and warm brown eyes. The contents of her home had a very [ordered] appearance, and as we sat down in her family's den, she continued to fold a basket of laundry, a job we had obviously interrupted. The pride she felt in her children was immediately apparent: two walls of her living area were literally covered with photos of them. The elaborate display had been carefully and thoughtfully assembled to accommodate the varying sizes and shapes of the frames.

Portland had been experiencing a heat wave and Vicky's home had been taken captive by it. Thankfully, a large floor fan enlivened the hot, heavy air, though it forced us to talk a bit louder than we would have normally. As we became acquainted, Vicky's thorough and talkative nature led us on a series of discoveries about her life.

In her unhesitating manner, Vicky made it known that she highly valued her family's well-being and the protection of it through health insurance.

-63-

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Just Don't Get Sick: Access to Health Care in the Aftermath of Welfare Reform
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Figures and Tables vii
  • Acknowledgments ix
  • Chapter 1: Introduction Access to Health Care and Welfare Reform 1
  • Chapter 2: Health Status and Health Changes 28
  • Chapter 3: Insurance Coverage 63
  • Chapter 4: Other Access and Barriers to Health Care 90
  • Chapter 5: Do Families Get the Health Care They Need? 114
  • Chapter 6: Worry, Planning, and Coping 136
  • Chapter 7: Facing Reality 163
  • Appendix 185
  • Bibliography 191
  • Index 205
  • About the Author 213
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