Community Health Net is here to help with health care

Local News

Taking a trip to the doctor’s office isn’t an easy decision for some low-income families. 

A check-up at the dentist or doctor’s office can be a hefty bill for people if they don’t have insurance, or if their insurance doesn’t cover their needs, but experts say people in Erie County are in good hands.  

For many people, health care isn’t on the top of their mind…until the time comes when they need it.  Interim CEO of Community Health Net, Craig Ulmer, says, “Healthy people don’t really think too much or are too concerned about their health. They’re healthy. Everything’s going well, but when you get a little sick, then you start thinking oh my gosh, I may need to see a doctor.” And then the big question… how to pay for the appointment.

These concerns hit home now more than ever as government leaders continue to debate over health care.  People at Community Health Net say low-income families could be hit the hardest.  Chairwoman Barbara Drew tells us, “We serve the under-served and those are the people that need us and we’re really worried about the tax and if the tax goes through these people will be hurt very, very bad.” 

Experts say not every community has the same resources when it comes to health care, and the people in the Erie area may have more options.  Drew says, “We’re in Harborcreek, we’re in Girard and we’re all over the city so they can go to different sights and get the needs that they need.”

But, Ulmer says there’s always more work to be done.  “We can always do better as a community and as a region, offering different offices, different sight and services and making them more easily available to those patients.” 

And because of resources like Community Health Net, low-income families in the Erie area have a safety net regardless of what decisions come down on a national level.  Community Health Net offers transportation services to get people who may not have access to a vehicle to their appointments and also translation services to everyone feel more comfortable seeking treatment.

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