Discussion of the effort to expand health care coverage is part of what we can expect from Governor M att Blunt when he delivers his State of the State Address on Wednesday. And, as the Governor and his aides have been finalizing their proposals, representatives of a faith-based organization have been making the rounds at the State Capitol, talking up their ideas to lawmakers. Samaritan Ministries administers its own health care cooperative in which members contribute a monthly gift the group describes as being similar to passing the hat in church. This money is then used to pay the costs of members’ health care needs. Vice President James Lansberry says membership is growing in Missouri, with about 600 families making up 1,800 individuals. Nationwide, about 33,000 people in 12,000 families are taking part. Lansberry points out this is not a health insurance policy, adding nobody involved in the program has his or her own medical insurance. He says Samaritan Ministries can keep the costs down by negotiating for the best prices and by cutting down on administration fees associated with health insurance.
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