The deadline to sign up for health care under the Affordable Care Act is two days from now. Before you say, ‘oh, it’s too expensive’ or ‘it’s going to go away anyway’ – consider at least taking the time to create a log-in under Healthcare.gov and investigate your possibilities.
I, like many of you, received a letter at the beginning of this year’s enrollment period saying my rates would triple over last year.
When I drug myself into a healthcare navigator (they’re still around, in spite of the cuts to funding for the program) expecting dire news, I discovered not only did the cost increase only four dollars a month, but my coverage is slightly better.
I’m not saying this will be the case for everyone, and I’ll be the first to admit the current system has its flaws, but the day we give up on the system created by hours of sweat and tears (I’ll leave out the blood.) by the Obama administration is the day we retreat further from the progress made.
Having health coverage shouldn’t be optional. I have friends saying they’re opting out of healthcare for themselves and only purchasing it for their kids because they can’t afford it. Parents shouldn’t be choosing to leave themselves vulnerable to financial ruin, or worse yet, illnesses that could have been prevented.
I liken our evolution of health coverage expectations to the history of public education. Free education for all used to be a radical idea. Critics questioned its necessity and affordability when Horace Mann led the charge in the 1800’s. Mann argued that universal public education was the best way to install civic virtue and character. Much like health care for all is the best way to promote prevention and ultimately reduce healthcare costs.
So I urge you to visit Healthcare.gov and find out if there is an option there you can afford.
And my dream is that one day when my daughters are my age, they look back at the time when people were dying because of lack of access to care, and think, wow – what a ludicrous concept, of course human beings should have access to affordable care.