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Yesterday, we traveled to Pittsfield for a rather spirited conversation about increases in health insurance costs, and one thing we discovered was a disgruntlement at high prices for minimal coverage.

A number of people at yesterday’s hearing said they are paying high prices for “catastrophic” coverage, and they wish they could afford more.

In most cases, co-pays and deductibles are sky high for single payers. As Cynthia Crispen Mangiardy said, “I have no health care security whatsoever.”

Cynthia, the other participants in today’s hearing, and residents across the state are all feeling the same way. Forced to decide on coverage levels, they are purchasing lower levels than they’d like, because they can’t afford more. These are not the kinds of decisions we want people to have to make.

When we conclude these hearings, we will produce a report with recommendations for Governor Patrick and continue to work on his reforms in this area. Hopefully, we can get insurance premiums to the point where people like Cynthia can buy the coverage they want without facing serious financial questions about it.

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