**Disclaimer** I wrote this post days before the Senate debuted it’s cruel joke of a plan. I was going to completely delete the opener, but you know what, no. It bears repeating:
A bunch of old white men are deciding the fate of millions of Americans’ healthcare. In secret. With no input. Without equal representation of the sexes and races. W.T.F. And I have a pre-existing condition: Lupus.
Ok, now for the present. It’s just come to light that while the Senate claimed to keep the provision to protect pre-existing conditions, really all they did is hide the fuck you to pre-existing conditioners in a loophole. The loophole being that there are these “small-business health plans” that could siphon off the healthy people, inevitably forcing the premiums of the sick to go up. Most likely WAY up. (Please read this article for more details.)
I’m fortunate enough to have employer provided health care, and good health care at that. But that could very well change with the AHCA/BRCA because I am one of the pre-existing conditioners that Republicans seem to despise. My insurance company could decide they no longer want to cover injectable methotrexate, which I absolutely need. The cost of ONE of my weekly injections is roughly $500, that’s $26,000 a year. That would come close to my gross yearly income.
That’s not to mention roughly 8 different labs they have to do on me every 1-3 months to make sure my lupus isn’t changing course and attacking my organs; something that I fend off by staying on my costly medication. Based on the EOBs from my insurance company, those labs would run me (without insurance) approximately $384 to $754 a pop, depending on how many tests they need to do. So that’s anywhere from an additional $1,536 to $9,048 a year, depending on how my disease is progressing.
Then there’s all the routine visits one must do on a regular basis, such as your physical, or for women, a pap smear, costing roughly $200-240 and $185-240 respectively without insurance coverage. God forbid you get a sinus infection or strep and then you’re looking at another $130-180 without labs.* I won’t even go into ER visits, which I think we’re all well aware of how costly that gets (hint, it’s in the thousands much of the time).
I have a middle of the road income and without insurance I literally couldn’t pay for anything else but my medical bills. How is it that in one of the wealthiest nations in the world, our current administration is all hunky-dory with millions of Americans being without insurance and/or going broke because they’re sick. NO ONE should go broke being sick. (Side note: bankruptcies went DOWN under the ACA, according to the liberal rag, Consumer Reports, among others.)
I’m not even that bad of a case compared to most. I know of many people who would be paying in the hundreds of thousands if they didn’t have proper health insurance. Why does being sick mean we are less worthy? Why do these old white men hate us? How am I supposed to “pull myself up by the bootstraps” when the only thing holding me back is the fact that being sick is costly? My illness, by the way, is not something I could have prevented, it’s a genetic disease. I didn’t bring this upon myself because I made poor decisions.
Many members of congress say they’re a Christian first, a conservative second (a la our VP Mike Pence). Then I ask them this: how do you think God would feel about you kicking millions off healthcare, and for penalizing those with pre-existing conditions, something over which they have no control? It’s simple, they pick and choose their type of Christianity.
To our MOCs deciding our fate, I ask you how you can ignore this:
For the whole Law is fulfilled in one word, in the statement, “YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.”
1 John 3:17
But whoever has the world’s goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?
He who oppresses the poor taunts his Maker, But he who is gracious to the needy honors Him.
It doesn’t seem to me that God would be very happy with our wealthy MOCs essentially deeming millions of Americans unworthy of medical care dooming them to the oppression of unpayable medical bills. I think he would want the poor, sick, and less fortunate to be protected, just as our founding fathers wanted.
A democracy works because the more fortunate help pay for the less fortunate, something that has completely gone out the window. I can’t tell you how many times recently I’ve heard “I don’t want to have to pay for someone else being sick”, or “I’m a man, why should I pay for women’s health!” Well guess what?! Someday YOU or your LOVED ONE will be sick, and who will help you then?! It’s hard enough living with the mental and social cost of having a pre-existing condition, to add oppressive medical bills on top of that is just cruel.
I think it’s time for the people making these decisions for us, whom WE put in office, listen to the masses who want to keep their protections under the ACA.
Your #FiveMinutes today? Call your MOCs and let them know you want to keep the ACA. It’s time we all show a little love to our neighbors, no matter who they are or what they believe.
* Based off of information found here: http://www.bluecrossma.com/blue-iq/pdfs/TypicalCosts_89717_042709.pdf Being that this is older data, it could be far more expensive, costs are also different depending on the area in which you live.