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‘There’s something wrong when hard-working people can’t meet the daily necessities of life’

Rick Illingworth, 56, and his wife Darlene, 51, of Tewksbury lost their health insurance about seven years ago when Darlene was diagnosed with cancer and had to leave her job. The Illingworths had gotten their health insurance coverage through Darlene‘s employer. Rick was also working selling real estate and doing contract recruiting, but neither jobs came with benefits.

Darlene and Rick Illingworth

“We barely managed to pick up insurance but we had to pay the entire premium for both of us ourselves,” Rick said. “We had a mortgage, bills, plus we had lost one income when Darlene lost her job. I had to take time off from work to be with her and take care of her. It was a very difficult time. It was only with the help of God and numerous people that we managed to make it.”

The Health Now! legislation creates an Adult Medical Security Plan (AMSP) that will help lower﷓income workers like the Illingworths who are ineligible for other health programs buy into a basic program. The AMSP will provide primary and preventive coverage for adults with incomes under 300 percent of the federal poverty level ($34,830 for a family of two). Hospitalization will be provided through the hospital free care pool.

“There’s something wrong when hard-working people are unable to meet the daily necessities of life because they have to pay excessive costs for health care,” Illingworth said.




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