Lt. Governor Casey Cagle Unveils Healthcare Initiative

August 23, 2007

Today, Lt. Governor Casey Cagle announced his two healthcare initiatives: The Georgia Health Marketplace and the Healthcare Safety Net.   

“For too long, consumers have taken a back seat in choosing which healthcare to purchase.  It's time to move individuals into the driver’s seat and give Georgians the ability to purchase affordable, portable health insurance through a simplified free market system.

“Unfortunately, more and more Georgians are going without insurance and basic healthcare services.   Seventy-one percent of the 1.7 million uninsured in Georgia are hardworking adults or their dependents.  We must find ways to meet the healthcare needs of all Georgians,” said Lt. Governor Casey Cagle 

The Georgia Health Marketplace (GHM) will put healthcare decisions back into the hands of consumers through the creation a clearinghouse of healthcare products available for purchase through a web-based system.  Multiple insurers, physician groups and state subsidized healthcare plans will be represented and will provide a strong, competitive market to individuals and small business owners.  This streamlined system coupled with newly offered products - along with the portability of the products - will produce real savings for the consumer.

The Healthcare Safety Net is a pilot program to triage indigent patients with non-emergent symptoms away from hospital emergency rooms and into more cost efficient clinical situations.    Safety Net Partnership Grants will be made available for five pilot Safety Net clinics to serve indigent patients. Clinical services will be offered from among the top 25 conditions most often seen in emergency rooms as well as chronic disease treatment and prevention services.

Further details regarding the plan will be forthcoming and citizens are encouraged to participate in the formation of the initiatives.  Those who want to get engaged are encouraged to contact the Lt. Governor’s office and offer feedback prior to the convening of the legislature in January.