Everyone loses when people cannot afford to get medical care. Conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure and addictions become more expensive to treat when they become chronic and affect other parts of the body.

Young or older adults without insurance cannot afford rehabilitative care so they can recover from the effects of a bone broken while playing a sport or slipping on ice. As a result, employability is limited and families struggle more than they need to.

Discussion of a particular health care proposal is of little help because there are currently many of them. Informed public comments stressing the need to have any replacement plan retain at least the patient protection components of the ACA before doing away with it may be the most effective action ordinary citizens can take.

Elected representatives should vote to keep provisions that would:

• Prohibit denial of coverage because of pre-existing conditions, or for occupations such as firefighters or police;

• Require coverage for women’s health services;


• Allow children to remain on parents’ policies until they are 26;

• Require insurers spend at least 80 percent of premiums on health care rather than paying shareholders or salaries;

• Eliminate time limits for treatment of chronically ill;

• Require insurers to cover mental health care costs, including addiction;

• Expand coverage for additional medications.

Only after those provisions are secured should other proposals for change be considered.

Silver Moore-Leamon, Auburn

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