More than ever, Americans need to hear stories that can happen to them at any time. Every American is at risk of bankruptcy whether they know it or not. Here is why we must stop allowing the orchestrated effort to malign a revamping of our healthcare system with Medicare for All.
The Affordable Care Act before Trump was virtually unaffordable for many. Trumpcare is fatal to the economies of most. Only
Medicare for All has answers.
This morning I opened my reader to The Atlantic article "Americans Are Going Bankrupt From Getting Sick" that should concern everyone.
In April 2016, Venus Lockett was about to give a speech at an event she volunteered for near her home in Atlanta. She was already stressed. The previous night, she had stayed up late making her presentation, and then deleted it by mistake. As she stepped up to the podium to give her remarks, she noticed that her words were slurring. She tried to speak into the mic, but the words that came out didn’t make sense.
A friend walked up and grabbed Lockett by the arm. A few people, noticing something wasn’t right, walked Lockett to another room and called an ambulance. Lockett, who was 57 at the time and uninsured, didn’t know if she could or should refuse the ambulance ride or decide which hospital it should take her to.
Paramedics sped her a few miles to Emory University Hospital Midtown, where she was held overnight. It turned out she had suffered a transient ischemic attack, or a mini-stroke. The hospital performed tests and sent her home, where she recovered fully.
In May, the hospital bill arrived. Lockett was charged $26,203.62 total for “observation,” which the bill instructed her to pay within 20 days. Lockett went into a tailspin. “Dang, I knew I shouldn’t have gone to the hospital,” she remembers thinking. “But at the same time, that was really scary to me, not being able to talk.”
The article presents stories of others as well. The problem is that at any given time, most people are in a reasonably healthy state. As such they do not give much thought to our healthcare system and the effects it could potentially have on one's finances and economic survival.
Absent Medicare for All it is a fact that many people will go bankrupt. We will continue to transfer our wealth to the wealthy owners of the Medical Industrial Complex (Drug companies, Hospitals, & Insurance companies). They are the ones with the pricing power that holds most of us hostage and prevents us from building wealth or income growth.