Georgia in Vermont
Twelve years ago, my healthy 30-year-old daughter was self-employed in Chicago, with no employer-provided health insurance. I insisted she have at least hospitalization and catastrophic coverage. Because she had taken a common antidepressant for a few months several years before, the only insurance she could get was $600 a month for a plan with high deductibles and high copays. When she married the next year, her husband's employers did not provide health insurance either, and maternity coverage on individual plans was so low that it wasn't worth it to pay for it. When their son was born, they had out of pocket expenses of $5100 for pre-natal care and an uncomplicated delivery with no anesthetic, and with the shortest allowable hospital stay. When their newborn son developed a (hospital-acquired!) staph infection and was hospitalized for 18 hours for intravenous antibiotics, that was another $7000, of which their insurance paid only half. I do not want to go back to a time when insurance companies can pick and choose who they want to insure, and are free to set unaffordable rates for everyone else.
Jorika in Vermont
My husband and I are both self-employed and purchase insurance through the ACA. Our premiums would increase by $590/month if it was repealed, possibly even more with the proposed bill. At ages 56 and 60 and with pre-existing conditions, we would not be able to afford anything other than catastrophic insurance, which means we would not visit doctors except in case of emergencies. Our health would suffer with lack of care (especially concerned about my husband's history of heart problems). Essentially this means we would wait for the heart attack rather than try to prevent it. Also, our children are currently on our state's medicaid for minors program, and we have no idea how this would change but it would probably mean they would no longer qualify. So, our whole family is at risk of losing healthcare without the ACA or medicare for all.
Stephanie in Vermont
I have a 14 year old son with a severe congenital heart defect, epilepsy, and autism. He has had 4 heart surgeries to date and will need more throughout his lifetime. He is stable and healthy now thanks to the health care he has received.
He was born before the ACA. When he was born, we had private insurance. While we were prepping for his first surgery at 10 days old our insurance adjuster told my husband that our baby would hit the lifetime cap by age 15 so we had better start saving now. I'm attaching a copy of his most recent surgery bill. I'm not sure how any middle class family could ever be expected to save up for a $125,000 hospital bill for ONE surgery.
The prospect of going without insurance for even a short period was terrifying – before the ACA, we knew we could be denied coverage. With the ACA, we know that our son will not have to worry about having his life saving surgeries covered. He will be able to pursue college and a career. We will not go bankrupt or lose our house trying to pay for life saving treatment.
He is almost 15 now, and near that prior lifetime cap. We desperately urge the senate not to pass any legislation that ends protections for the millions of people like our son.