Cruel and senseless
by Tom Sullivan
Story link here.
Health care is personal, intensely personal, I wrote two weeks ago. I have several friends fighting cancer. If you don't, you will. Two of them made their stories public in the last 24 hours.
Laura Packard, 41, is in chemotherapy. Self-employed, single, and an Obamacare patient, Packard found out she had stage 4 Hodgkin's Lymphoma just months ago. Even at that stage it has a 90 percent cure rate, her oncologist tells her. That is, if Republicans in Congress don't take away her insurance. She writes at U.S. News & World Report:
The various versions of health care reform being discussed in Washington D.C. terrify me and my new cancer friends. (Cancer is the shittiest fraternity, with the best members; everyone that I have met over the past couple months has been unbelievably kind.)Joel Silberman, 68, can fight his stage 2 pancreatic cancer because, thanks to Medicare and marriage equality, his spouse's Government Employee Health Association group plan provides secondary insurance that will allow him to fight his illness without wiping out their savings. He writes:
Getting rid of lifetime and/or annual limits? That means many of us will die when we hit those caps and can no longer afford treatment. Getting rid of pre-existing condition protections? Many of us will die, because we won't be insurable anymore. Allowing insurers to remove essential health benefits (such as chemotherapy, or hospitalization, or many of the drugs we need to stay alive) means many of us will die, because our insurance won't cover our treatment anymore.
This is not an academic question for me, because I am undergoing chemotherapy right now. I may need radiation after, or if this fails, immunotherapy. Will I be able to get affordable insurance next year, or will I die?
A Congressional Budget Office report released today reveals just how lucky I am to be covered by my husband's plan; 22 million more Americans could go uninsured should the Republican-backed American Health Care Act pass.But Joel can tell you that himself:
Many, many, people were responsible for equality that saved my life. And now we all must come together again and save the lives of many more from healthcare bill that will truly bankrupt or kill people.