On Thursday, August 16th at 10:00 AM, Senate Democrats will hold a hearing titled, “America Speaks Out: Protecting Care for Americans with Pre-Existing Conditions.” The Senators will hear testimony from Americans with pre-existing conditions who would be hurt by Republican efforts to expand junk insurance plans and take away their health coverage.
Elena Hung – Silver Spring, MD: Elena is the president and co-founder of the Little Lobbyists. Her daughter, Xiomara, was born with complex medical needs and has required extensive medical care throughout her life, including a tracheostomy, ventilator, and feeding tube. For Elena’s family, protections for children with pre-existing conditions, prohibitions against lifetime caps, and Medicaid are critical to ensuring Xiomara’s care. Her testimony can be found here.
Chelsey Schaumberg – Seymour, WI: Chelsey is a social studies teacher and mother of three. Chelsey’s oldest daughter, Zoe, was born with a congenital heart defect that required her to have open-heart surgery at five days old, the first of many surgeries Zoe will face during her lifetime. Chelsey and her husband worry that eliminating protections for patients like their daughter will jeopardize her ability to get affordable coverage. Her testimony can be found here.
Sam Bloechl – Chicago, IL: Sam is a self-employed small-business owner from Chicago. When he left his job to start his small business, he made sure he had health insurance and even worked with an insurance broker to make sure he had a better plan. What Sam did not know was that these junk plans are not covered by the ACA’s protections for Americans with pre-existing conditions, which he discovered when he was diagnosed with Stage IV T-Cell Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, an aggressive but treatable form of blood cancer. Sam now faces nearly $1 million in outstanding medical bills. His testimony can be found here.
Dr. Constance Bohon – Washington, DC: Dr. Bohon is a practicing obstetrician-gynecologist in Washington, DC. She has 35 years of experience and has dedicated her career to improving health outcomes for women. Her testimony can be found here.
Erin Price – Alexandria, VA: In 2010, Erin was 27 when she was diagnosed with Stage IIB breast cancer. She put off getting checked after finding a lump on her breast because she was covered by COBRA in between switching employers and feared that she would lose coverage if she was discovered to have a pre-existing condition. Now, Erin is cancer-free but relies on the ACA’s patient protections in order to secure insurance that will allow for ongoing care to treat the long-term side effects of her chemotherapy and radiation. Her testimony can be found here.