Republicans who are cheering for Obamacare to fail are really hoping that a lot of sick people don’t get treatment. They can rant and rave about government intrusion all they want but this program will have a real impact on the lives of real people. And it’s going to help a lot more than it’s going to hurt.
I’m biased. I’m one of the people it will help. I’ve been self-employed for the past 20 years and, until this year, have bought insurance on the individual market. I had good coverage, but I paid for it. But that only worked in the good times. When the recession hit, I got burned.
Back in 2004, I was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer. It’s a slow growing cancer and I was asymptomatic so instead of treating it, they’ve been monitoring it. Three or four times a year, I have blood drawn and lymph nodes checked. So far, so good, but eventually, it will cause me trouble.
From 2004 through 2009, I paid about a $1000 a month for insurance for me and my family. I kept the high payments because of the cancer. It was a major expense, but the alternative could become a lot more expensive. I also knew that if I dropped my insurance, I would never get coverage again.
Unfortunately, the Great Recession hit hard. In an effort to cut costs, I reduced my coverage. I thought I was just increasing my deductible and co-pays in exchange for a lower premium. I was wrong. After my regular visit, I received a bill for lab work that topped $1000. I argued and fought and after months, I only paid about half of the bill. I was never given a reason. I think I just wore them down.
Never the less, I stopped going for my check ups and just hoped that the cancer wasn’t starting to spread.
Then, my wife got a job that offered insurance. I thought my disease would prevent me from being covered, but I was pleasantly surprised when they told me I was eligible. It was a great relief. We did the paperwork and, for the first time in almost 20 years, I thought we had affordable insurance at a reasonable rate. Boy, was I wrong.
After going back for my check up, I got a letter from the new insurance company informing me that I had a pre-existing condition that is not covered. So, they offer coverage, just not for anything that was already wrong with me. In essence, they only offer insurance to people who don’t need it.
I haven’t been tested since early this year. I’m waiting for January first when “pre-existing condition” is no longer a valid term. I’m hoping for the best.
So for all of you people hoping Obamacare fails, screw you, too.
Thomas Mills is the founder and publisher of PoliticsNC.com. Before beginning PoliticsNC, Thomas spent twenty years as a political and public affairs consultant. Learn more >