I’ve had 52 years of constant expensive health care. At one year, I was diagnosed with severe hemophilia. I have three blood transfusions a week, which run several hundred thousand dollars a year. Bleeds in my joints have left me crippled and in a wheelchair for large portions of my life. I also acquired HIV and hepatitis-C through these blood transfusions, and been in treatment for those my entire adult life. And lastly, the physical pain from my hemophilia triggered a manic episode and I was diagnosed with bi-polar in my late 30s.
At first glance, this life may seem like a horror show, but I assure you it is not. When you have access to good quality health care, many good things are possible. I’ve had challenges, for sure, but overall, I have had a pretty good life: wonderful family and friends, a happy childhood, a good education, meaningful work, a loving wife, and three beautiful boys. All this because I had access to quality health care, which is often the primary factor in determining the quality of life for Americans.
There was a price though: my father and I had to put good health insurance above pursuing the American dream. We paid about twice as much as people in other developed countries and we received less coverage, but still, I had health care I desperately needed.
Giving every American quality affordable healthcare is a moral imperative.
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We’ll never be a truly great nation until we have Medicare for All. No one must be left behind. With Medicare for All, millions of Americans will avoid bankruptcy and be lifted out of poverty. Those with health conditions who desperately need care will get it.
Contact your representative and urge them to pass the bill, submitted by U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash, to provide Medicare For All. It’s a medical emergency. American lives depend on it.
Dan Noonan, Evanston
Keeping our masks
“We’re not getting rid of masks,” says Dr. Ngozi Ezike; ”Masks have to continue to be a mainstay.”
So the die is cast. We’re condemned to a future without faces. The simple, life-affirming pleasure of sharing a smile with a stranger has officially been designated a thing of the past. Without the glow of empathy that comes from “face-to-face” encounters and communication (there’s a reason we use that term), the glow of our humanity is extinguished, as well.
David G Whiteis, Humboldt Park