My name is David, and I’m a registered voter in Hamilton County, Tennessee, and I’m writing to urge you to vote NOT on the Better Care Reconciliation Act. I, and people I am extremely close to, would be directly and negatively impacted by this legislation. We have been sick – through no fault of our own.
— David White (@davidmwhite) May 4, 2017
My Personal Story:
In 2004, I was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. That experience taught me a lot about the conventional American health care system. Concepts such as seeking a 2nd (or even a 3rd) opinion to a major diagnosis, maintaining a healthy diet, and making my own informed decisions (and not blindly following the advice of a doctor) are second nature to me now.
I was originally misdiagnosed with a more aggressive form of lymphoma than the one I actually had, and narrowly avoided 2 years of chemotherapy and monthly hospitalizations with spinal taps. In reality, I only needed a small handful of treatments, which were finished 6 months after they started.
My Wife’s Story:
Several years ago, my wife, Lauren, was diagnosed with Bipolar disorder. After two hospitalizations and spending years in counseling and taking toxic medication, Lauren decided to pursue alternative approaches to her health. Over the last two years, Lauren has maintained an incredibly strict nutrition plan which has done wonders. She is stable, has been off traditional medications for months, and feels better than she has felt in years.
However, Bipolar is a chronic disease, and when all else fails, expensive medications can stabilize a patient. When needed, these medications are a good and necessary thing. Through no fault of her own, my wife has a chronic, life-long disease.
My Niece’s Story:
A few years ago, my sister gave birth to a feisty girl named Annie. Unfortunately, as the doctors discovered at the 20-week pre-natal exam, the left side of Annie’s heart wasn’t growing. It was completely missing. Through no fault of her own, Annie was born with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome.
Through no fault of her own, Annie has a pre-existing condition and will need to take medications and monitor her pulse for her entire life.
These illnesses are not our fault. Yet, according to the Congressional Budget Office, all of us might lose health insurance coverage if the Better Care Reconciliation Act becomes law.
What’s more, the CBO says:
- 22 million Americans could lose coverage over the next 10 years
- People with disabilities could lose access to Medicaid
- The elderly will be charged exorbitant rates of up to 5x higher than younger people
This bill claims to be “better” for the American people.
While the ACA is not perfect and certainly needs to be modified, the BCRA is nothing of the sort that helps every day Americans. The BCRA is harmful to me, my wife, my niece, the disabled, the elderly, and the poor.
In short, it is an assault on the lives and the health of all Americans.
I urge you and your colleagues to vote NO.