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 Healthcare Help for The Most Vulnerable Among Us
Time For A Financial Reassessment
Medical Care Access Coalition provides U.P. clients with lifesaving prescription med- ication, counseling services
More than a million dollars’ worth of pre- scription medications.
That’s what the Medical Care Access Coali- tion (MCAC) helped procure for its clients in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula in 2019— among many other essential activities.
With a mission to guide and assist Dickinson and Iron County residents to access optimal health care to meet their individual needs, the organization also provides free counseling services to more than 1,200 clients each year.
“The MCAC was started in 2004 to help those who could not afford medical insurance and who didn’t have insurance. We helped them to obtain prescription medications and see doctors and physicians,” explains Mylynn Trulock, the MCAC’s executive director.
“When the Affordable Health Care Act came into effect, we had to slightly change our scope. At that time, we became Medicare and Medicaid counsellors as well as application counselors for the health insurance market- place,” she adds.
The MCAC assists vulnerable populations, including elderly, low-income and learning- disabled clients who do not know how to access state Medicaid, federal low-income subsidies, food stamps or commodity foods.
The organization helps these clients find out which type of assistance they are eligible for and complete the application process, some- thing that can be overwhelming on their own.
“Medicare can be so confusing for people. Many of our clients are especially susceptible to scams, so we try to look out for them and help them navigate and understand the sys- tem,” Trulock explains.
She points to a testimonial from a recent MCAC client: “Without the assistance offered through MCAC I do not know what would have happened to me—no one should have to be in fear of dying simply due to the fact that the medication needed per month is too expen- sive.”
Enbridge is committed to improving quality of life in the communities where we operate, and our recent $60,000 will help the MCAC procure another approximately $500,000 of prescription medication for its clients.
“We’ve been operating on reserve funding since 2018 . . . when the representative from Enbridge called and told me we’d received the funding, I just started crying because it has given us at least six more months of our oper- ating budget,” recalls Trulock.
“We were so blessed by Enbridge. I can't even express our and our clients’ gratitude. Our clients have truly turned into friends after working together for so long and we’re so thankful to be able to keep supporting them.”
We’re experiencing a period of upheaval in the world today, which has also had an impact on the economy and markets. Given the spike in volatility and uncertainty we’re seeing in the broader economy, it may be time to step back and carefully review your financial life.
Take some time to assess where you stand and whether it may be appropriate to make any adjustments in your strategy. Here are four key questions to ask about your current financial circumstances.
#1 – Do you have enough cash to meet short- term needs?
A healthy cash reserve is important in times like these. A general rule of thumb is to have enough cash on hand (held in readily accessi- ble accounts) to meet three to six months’ worth of expenses. But given today’s econom- ic uncertainties, it may make sense to set aside up to nine months’ worth of cash.
#2 – Are you comfortable with the level of risk in your portfolio?
Investment markets have been volatile since the start of 2020 and may continue to be for the coming months and maybe years. Unset- tled markets can be a real test of whether you are comfortable with your investment strategy or if the level of risk in your portfolio is keep- ing you up at night. Given the disruption that’s been occurring, a portfolio review makes sense.
#3 – Do you have a solid protection strategy in place?
This is an opportune time to make sure that
you and your family are adequately insured. Health insurance is a good place to start, par- ticularly if your work situation has changed in recent months. The importance of adequate life insurance is more evident in times like these to protect the wellbeing of your family. Look at other protection options too, such as disability income insurance and long-term care coverage to meet specialized care needs, especially as you grow older.
#4 – Is your financial plan still on track?
Finally, take a careful look at your overall financial plan. Are you still on track to achieve the key goals you initially established? Does your plan require adjustments based on cir- cumstances that have changed? Given all of the events of recent months, this is the right time to review your plan to make sure you are still heading in the right direction.
Be sure to connect with your financial advi- sor to explore these questions in more detail and keep your financial life in order.
Scott W. Knaffla, CFP®, ChFC®, APMA®, BFATM is a Private Wealth Advisor with Flourish Financial Partners a private wealth advisory practice of Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. in Marquette, MI. He specializes in fee-based financial planning and asset management strategies and has been in practice for 12 years. To contact him, please visit: or call (906) 226-7526. Office location: 1501 Division St. Marquette, MI 49855.
Investment advisory products and services are made available through Ameriprise Financial Services, LLC, a registered investment adviser.
Ameriprise Financial Services, LLC. Member FINRA and SIPC.
© 2020 Ameriprise Financial, Inc. All rights reserved.
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August 2020 • Vol. 28 • Number 5
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