“A few weeks ago,” writes Vice President Biden, “President Obama asked you to share your personal story about how the health care crisis has affected you and the ones you love. Hundreds of thousands of stories poured in from every corner of the country. The President and I have read through many of them ourselves – and now I’m encouraging you to do so as well. Read these powerful, personal stories from people in your area and around the country.”
I’m a 26 year old woman with an undergraduate degree and a juris doctorate. Last year, while still in law school, my gall bladder became infected. It had to be removed in an emergency procedure, which kept me in the hospital for 8 days as I battled pancreatitus. When everything was said and done, my bills were over $100,000. I fought my insurance company for over a year to get them to make payments on my claims, while they tried to deny them, calling my gall bladder infection a pre existing condition. When I finally prevailed, I was told that the insurance company settled with the hospital for under $40,000. I find it disgusting that my health care is being covered by a corporation, whose purpose is to turn a profit, and thus is benefitted by denying my claim in any way possible. I also find it reprehensible that when I, a private citizen, owed the debt, it was over twice what the giant insurance corporation owed. Having to pay that debt would have forced me to file for bankruptcy, and ruined my credit at age 26. I’m not the “lazy bum” that people who don’t support universal health care describe. I’m an upstanding citizen who votes, pays taxes, has seven years of post high school education, and contributes to society. Through no fault of my own, I almost faced financial ruin because my gall bladder ruptured, and my student health insurance coverage was so poor. I want to live in a country where we value education enough to pay taxes to support it, and we provide health care to the individuals taking advantage of that education so that they can take this step without fear of financial ruin.
☞ We need health care reform – with “the public option.”
This movie-length clip of SONY’s keynote presentation at the Consumer Electronics Show some months back begins with an unusual performance by Tom Hanks, and at the 21:30 mark shows how the Chumby technology may spread beyond the little critter’s own squeezable frame.