I was working under a contract for Microsoft in 2006 when I suffered two heart attacks and needed a double-bypass surgery.
While I was on the operating table, I lost both my job and my insurance. I was unable to get unemployment because you had to be ready and able to work.
The surgery completely depleted my savings I could not do everyday chores and was dependent on people for nearly two years. I was without a job, insurance, and in serious financial ruin. But, by the grace of God I was able to make it because of my church, friends and family.
After my heart attacks and before the ACA was passed, I was both denied insurance due to a preexisting condition and was unable to get affordable insurance. But, when the ACA went into effect, I was finally able to afford the care I needed. I got insulin for my diabetes, glasses so I could read and work, and a cardiologist needed for my heart care. Because of the ACA, I finally got the medical attention I needed.
Since the ACA went into effect, my health improved. I returned to work as a Comcast employee, and now have insurance.
Had I not had the ACA, my life and the life of so many others, were at risk. From my perspective, it is the worst feeling in the world that you could lose your life because you don’t have the money.to pay to live. Health care should not be a right of the few but a universal right for all. Thank you, ACA.
Joselito Lopez is a health care advocate and 6-year member of Washington CAN.