Speaker: Candis McDow, Freelance Writer, Self Employed
Please introduce yourself. Tell us your name, city or county where you live in Georgia, age and occupation.
Candis McDow: Hi, my name is Candice mcdowell. I live in Gt County. I'm 34 years old and I am a freelance writer.
What is your health care story? Include whether you have Medicaid or not, and how having or not having it affects your life. Share details.
Candis McDow: I do have Medicaid. I've had it since 2014 or 15. I believe I can't remember what year exactly. Um, it has affected my life in a very positive way. I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 2014. And when I began to receive Social Security, that's when I receive Medicaid and it couldn't have been more beneficial for me because the medicine that I take is really expensive. It's about $600. And so receiving Medicaid was an extreme blessing because that took care of it 100%. So I don't have to pay anything for the medicine and it's really mandatory for me to take it daily. And so it's, it's really, really an important thing for me also with the medicine that I took to kind of determine what would work for me. Um, I gained a lot of weight and, um, with behavioral medicine for, um, mental illnesses, that's like a really downside to, um, taking the medicine is it, it makes you gain weight. And so I was about, um, £7 shy of £300. And luckily the Medicaid paid for the gastric sleeve surgery and I lost over £80 and I'm pretty close to my goal weight of £200. And so gratefully, Medicaid saved my life. Actually, I was going through a lot of health scares um with my blood pressure and just all of these um ailments that I shouldn't have had in my early thirties. And so Medicaid has been very great blessing me in that aspect. Um even with regular um visits to my primary care doctor and things like that, I don't have to pay out of pocket. And Medicaid has really just been blessing me in that aspect. So I'm very grateful for it. It's been able to provide me a lot of aid and support for things that I need as far as health care is concerned. And so I'm really grateful for it. Um, I don't know what's gonna happen for it as far as me having it because I've been taken off of social security. So I'm pretty sure that's gonna be taken away, but it has benefited me greatly with the years that I've been afforded the opportunity to have it.
Describe any challenges or discrimination accessing health care that you may have experienced.
Candis McDow: Gratefully, I've not experienced any discrimination or any hassles with Medicaid. I can honestly say my journey and experience with Medicaid has been really great. Like I said, they paid for my surgery, which was really expensive, but it actually saved my life and I'm grateful to this day for that. Um, it's paid for my medicine, which is very essential to my life and my sanity and for my doctor's visit, it pays for that as well. I've not had a negative experience thus far and I'm really grateful for that.
How do you think Medicaid can be better?
Candis McDow: I think Medicaid could do better as far as offering the service to people that aren't just solely on social security or, um, really just in, um, a down situation as far as financially, um, are people that are, um, freelance writers such as myself that I don't have, um, any kind of health care package or anything, whereas a regular job will offer where I'm working for myself independently. I could greatly benefit for Medicaid and, um, it's not offered for me. So I'm not, like I said, I'm not sure if it's gonna be canceled for me because I no longer have social security. I don't know where I'm gonna go if they take it away from me. And so that's like, um, a scare because I'm kind of dependent. Well, I'm really dependent on, especially for my medicine. So, um, I think it should just be provided on a grander scale for other people that don't have um, the usual 9 to 5 job. And so it should just be offered on a grander scale for people that have, um, like unusual jobs and in jobs that, um, don't offer a health package