HOUSTON – Houston is home to the largest medical complex in the world, with more than 100,000 healthcare workers. But it’s still a struggle for many to find affordable healthcare options because they don’t have insurance.
According to data presented by UnderstandingHouston.org, a quarter of people living in Harris, Fort Bend and Montgomery counties don’t have insurance, and 43% of them are Hispanic. That’s four times the uninsured rate for white people.
There are also more than 180,000 uninsured children in those three counties.
The financial devastation caused by COVID-19 isn’t making it any easier for families that were already struggling to pay for healthcare.
Ana Basurto, a 32-year old single mother lost her job as a waitress six months ago. “With the little bit of savings I’ve had is what I’ve been able to use to provide for my son and myself,” she said.
But KPRC 2 found there are options for good healthcare for those without insurance.
“We have a sliding scale and it’s based on your income,” explained Dr. Vian Nguyen, Chief Medical Officer at Legacy Community Health. Legacy is one of 1,400 federally qualified health centers across the country funded, in part, through the Health Resources and Service Administration, or HRSA, that provides extremely low-cost healthcare to almost 30 million people.
Legacy offers adult primary care, pediatric care, dental, vision, mental health and OB/GYN care, as well as low-cost prescription drugs.
But it’s not the only solution.
Express Family Clinic has offices in Spring, Conroe and New Caney, and offers low-cost healthcare without insurance.
“Our office visits are $50 and we’re seeing everybody right now,” said Melissa Herpal, a nurse practitioner who discounts all her services.
“If you need to come in and have your A1C tested cause you’re a diabetic, the fee is $25,” she said. “To check your thyroid, your cholesterol, your liver, your kidneys, we can do all of that for $45. You need a strep test, it’s $20. You need a steroid shot, it’s $20.”
Ask 2 Live: On Oct, 8, KPRC 2 Consumer Investigator Bill Spencer will host a virtual Zoom conversation with a panel of experts to help you find affordable healthcare. Click this link to register for the event or sign up below: