Greenville has one of the highest average annual incomes in the nation, but residents there say it’s only because of the Affordable Care Act that they can afford health care.
The average price for a health care plan in Greenville was $1,049 per year in 2016, according to a new study released Tuesday by the National Center for Health Statistics.
It was the fourth-highest rate in the state and the eighth-highest in the country.
The study, which analyzed data from a range of health insurance companies, shows that Greenville is one of three areas in the South that have the lowest average annual health care spending.
In a statement, the Greenville Chamber of Commerce said that “while our residents have access to the most affordable healthcare in the United States, we believe that the Green and Orange County area has the potential to be the best health care system in the US.”
The Chamber’s executive director, David F. Ricks, said the average health care bill in Greenvillers city-owned hospitals is “substantially lower than the national average” and that the average cost of a patient visit is $1.80, or $30 less than in the city of Orlando, Florida.
Ricks said that, like many areas of the country, Greenvilles health care costs are higher than in other areas.
“The Affordable Care Acts are a great opportunity for the health care industry to expand to new markets, and we believe our state and local leaders have a great track record of improving access to health care services,” Ricks said.
Although the average monthly cost for a Greenville resident’s health care is $2,818, the state’s health insurance plan is more affordable than in Orange County.
The average annual cost for Orange County residents is $4,828, according the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, a nonprofit think tank.
Many residents in Greenfield are eligible for Medicare or Medicaid and the Green County Medical Society provides free or reduced-cost care.
They also are eligible to receive free or discounted prescription medications and outpatient care.
But some Greenfield residents have struggled with the costs of health care and are worried that the new health care law will not be enough.
Greenville resident David H. Anderson said that the Affordable Healthcare Act “has been very expensive for me and my family, but we need to be careful and patient with ourselves.”
“We are trying to make the best of the situation and be patient and work with other families,” he said.
“I do think we have a lot of work to do.”