It’s estimated that more than 1 in 10 adults in the U.S. are uninsured—even more in states without Medicaid expansion.
We at K Health believe everyone deserves quality healthcare, regardless of insurance status. For people uninsured or underinsured, we put together a list of resources to help you get access to affordable care.
1. Look Into Federal and State Programs
There are multiple health-related resources offered through the government.
- Medicare is a federal health insurance program that offers coverage for prescription medication, doctors’ services, and hospital visits for people 65 years of age or older, and for certain people younger than 65 with disabilities or with specific health conditions.
- Medicaid programs, which are run through state governments, are designed to provide health coverage to low-income individuals, children, and families.
- If you’re a parent, you can also look into state programs for your kids. Many states offer free or low-cost health insurance for kids through Children’s Health Insurance Program or U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
- For hospice care, ask your local hospital about federal and state law. Some laws require certain hospitals to provide free medical care or reduce prices to those who are eligible.
2. Explore Your Local Health Centers and Free Clinics
Local community health clinics often provide free or low-cost general services, depending on your income. You can look into these clinics for doctor visits and low-cost medications.
By doing a little research into your local health centers, you can get the care you need without the expensive price tag.
3. Contact 2-1-1
211 is a local resource hub to get information and referrals on mental health resources, financial assistance programs to help pay for prescriptions, and medical emergencies. It also can help you learn about other local assistance programs.
4. Remember Resources Exist Specifically for Women
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), through its National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program, provides screening and diagnostic services for women in every state.
If you feel a lump or feel something is off, women who have low-incomes or are uninsured can get screened for free
5. Take Advantage of Primary Care in Rural Areas
If you’re located in a rural area like Maine, the Rural Health Clinic (RHC) program is intended to increase access to primary care to people within rural communities. Coverage includes access to doctors and nurses.
6. Don’t Miss Out on Veteran Benefits
For those who have served in the military, you may be eligible for medical care and prescription coverage through a local Veterans Affairs facility.
7. If You’re Homeless, Seek Shelter-Based Care
There are shelter-based healthcare programs that provide healthcare to those that are homeless and living in shelter settings. There are also sometimes mobile healthcare services in your area, where clinicians provide extended service to those that are homeless.
You can find more information on these services from the National Health Care for the Homeless Council.
8. Consider Affordable Cash Pay and Out of Pocket Options
Remote text-based visits cost $35 for everyone, regardless of condition.
If you’re not sure if you need to see a doctor, you can use the free K Health Symptom Checker for personalized healthcare information and medical advice. Getting treatment remotely can save people a lot on the costs associated with in-person visits.
Advocating for yourself and researching the tools available can help you get care you need even if you’re uninsured.