Not long ago I almost lost my husband, Steve, to something so personal not many people talk about it: a health complication combined with a lack of insurance.
After my husband had multiple heart attacks, we had what qualified for the Affordable Care Act. The cardiologist informed me that he had to have immediate open-heart surgery or else he was going to die. The outcome is the insurance company only covered $5,000 of the $135,000 bill. We are now in debt having to pay that off. The hospital has sent it to collections even after we were making payments, and due to paying that off, we cannot afford insurance.
Every day we hear similar stories. But there is a solution. We can join the rest of the developed world by offering universal health care, saving money as well as lives. There’s a bill in our Legislature which would create that system: SB 5204. But our senator in the Vancouver area won’t let the bill have a hearing. No surprise, she gets campaign contributions from insurance and pharmaceutical companies.
Sen. Annette Cleveland, D-Vancouver, needs to hear from you that this is unacceptable. Please contact her and let her know you expect her to schedule a hearing for SB 5204.