Letter: Health care should be a right
I read the comments by former Gov. Hickenlooper in the Sept. 3 Vail Daily with great interest. As a retired Ob/Gyn who practiced for 36 years and delivered thousands of babies, health care is very dear to my heart. Health care should be a right and not a privilege. Under Donald Trump’s presidency, fewer people have affordable health care or any health care at all.
One of the problems of tying health care to your job is that when you become unemployed your health care goes away. Because of COVID-19 (and the total incompetence of the White House’s handling of the virus), many people have lost their jobs and their insurance. This is especially a problem when over 6 million Americans have been infected and need health care. The Affordable Care Act, although not perfect, provided coverage for 40 million people.
Donald Trump has slowly eaten away at the protection provided by the ACA and is currently suing to end it completely. We have heard for four years about his “wonderful” replacement plan. We are still waiting. With very limited options for private insurance in Eagle County, a public option would be a welcome alternative. The importance of having coverage for preexisting conditions ( 100+ million Americans have them), is exacerbated by the pandemic. We do not know the repercussions and long term effects of the COVID-19 virus.
The way for health care to be most effective is proactive care, not reactive care. In the United States, if you go to the ER you receive care, expensive care, whether you have insurance or not (by the way, those of us who have insurance ultimately pay for that care through higher premiums). If you have insurance, you can obtain care proactively/preventively in a more cost-effective way.
On another note, if you are older or disabled and have Medicare you aren’t safe from Donald Trump either. He has stopped the payroll tax during the pandemic and has promised to make this change permanent if re-elected. Why is this important? It is the payroll tax that funds Social Security and Medicare. If he does this, predictions are that Social Security will run out of money in less than a year and Medicare by 2023.
Where has Cory Gardner been? His silence is deafening. Health care is just another instance where he follows Donald Trump’s every lead (he has voted with him nearly 90% of the time ). Yet another example of how Gardner has failed the people of Eagle County and Colorado. Gardner and Trump don’t care about the people of Eagle County and Colorado and they do not deserve your vote on Nov. 3.
Dr. Stephen Gordon
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