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Letter to the editor: Repealing Affordable Care Act a mistake


I’m with the majority of Americans who oppose the repeal of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). The law may not be perfect, but repealing it will cost 3 million jobs for those in health care, as well as other detrimental economic effects, not to mention the many, many people who would lose access to quality health care. Many people don’t realize that the Republican plan to repeal the ACA would jeopardize the health insurance of tens of millions of people. I know because I am one of them.

Before the Affordable Care Act, I was dropped from my parents’ health care plan upon my graduation from college. Having a pre-existing condition of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis and chronic migraine headaches, I was denied major medical coverage, based on my medical history which was beyond my control. I considered going without health insurance and not renewing my prescriptions because I could not find affordable health coverage. My parents and I spent many stressful months searching for an affordable plan that would cover a graduate student who had not yet attained a job that provided group health insurance. Because of my pre-existing condition, the only insurance plan offered by Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota was well beyond what I could afford.

Sadly, my story was all too common before the Affordable Care Act’s protections for people with pre-existing conditions. If you know someone who has struggled with an affliction like arthritis, cancer, or asthma, then you know someone whose health and livelihood would be threatened by repeal of the health care law. This is not about politics. For people like me with chronic, lifelong conditions requiring ongoing and often expensive treatments, health care access is vital. It would be a grave mistake to repeal the Affordable Care Act.