Thursday, June 28, 2012

Affordable Care Act Upheld Today!

I've already paid top dollar for my health insurance until November when I'll officially be on Medicare.
So why am I so happy about this?
I'm a nurse. I've seen too many poor people "treated" poorly medically because they did not have insurance. I've known people to go without needed care because they had no insurance and couldn't afford to pay for what they needed.
I believe that health is not something only the wealthy should have. I believe that a healthy society is necessary for the entire society to survive. I believe that we are responsible for ourselves and each other. I believe in the words and deeds of an itinerant teacher from 2000 years ago.
It was in the early 1990s that I spoke at the White House Rose Garden in front of President Bill Clinton, Mrs. Clinton, Vice President Gore and Mrs. Gore about my personal health care story: caring for my dying mother in a rural area with no hospice available. It was not long after Mrs. Clinton's father had died and I wrote her a letter offering my condolences and telling her my story. I wanted her to know, as she worked for health care reform, that access to that care was very important. That letter got me a trip to the White House.
That was nearly twenty years ago. Twenty-friggin'-years it took to get us only this far in the battle to have ACCESS to adequate health care for all of our citizens regardless of their ability to pay or pre-existing condition.
The next step is a single payer.
I will be on mine in November.
It took me sixty-five years to get there.
Let's not take that long for that next step...