The Manchester Times

Time For Health Care Reform Has Come

The Manchester Times — Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Letter to the Editor

The America's Affordable Health Choices Act in the House is something our family has been hoping for since our daughter was born with kidney disease and autism. Congress had a chance at health care reform 16 years ago. Since then, we've been paying more and more for less and less health insurance coverage. We're going broke trying to get the medical care our child needs.

My daughter spent her first two weeks of life in a neonatal intensive care unit. Even though she was covered by two different insurers, we still had to grapple with the high costs of her medical care. Her first bill from a children's hospital was $28,000. Despite no previous debt, we took on thousands of dollars in medical expenses and almost lost our home. No family should be forced to make such difficult choices. Most recently, we tallied her therapies not covered medically and educationally and have spent $18,000 out-of-pocket over two years.

This is why we're urging Congress to support the House bill. It would guarantee affordable, quality medical care for all; provide subsidies to help people in need pay for insurance coverage; and cap out-ofpocket costs. And my daughter can keep her current doctor and plan or choose a new plan, including a new public health insurance option that will put her health care needs before corporate profits.

The time for health care reform has come. Quality, affordable health care for all children and adults is needed now.

Lauren Agoratus,

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