Columns/Opinion, Letters to the Editor

Kavanaugh poses real threat to health care

Danielle Walker, Morgantown
I am a single mom with two sons who have extensive medical needs, and I value affordable health insurance. I’ve had many health issues, including ovarian cysts, miscarriages, heavy menstrual cycles and ectopic pregnancies.
In 2016 I finally had a physician listen and hear my anxiety, pain and concerns of 28-day menstruation with clotting. After an ultrasound confirmed a cluster of cysts, a referral to an OB/GYN and a biopsy, we concluded a hysterectomy was my best option.

My decision time was limited because my youngest son was scheduled for a foot surgery. It was also time for my annual review of Medicaid, and the physician’s office and hospital were in the process of getting a Medicaid approval.
Neither of my two jobs offered health care, and my gross income was $14 over the qualifying income for Medicaid. My case worker cried with me over the phone — she knew the trials and tribulations my family was going through. Thankfully, my sons were still eligible for Medicaid.

When I found out I didn’t qualify for Medicaid my family and I were on our way to an appointment at UPMC Pittsburgh for my oldest son. While a friend drove, I started making calls to learn about the Affordable Care Act (ACA). My biggest concern was pre-existing conditions and if my physicians were in-network providers. My plan option was affordable, and all of my physicians were on the list. I didn’t have the burden of my post-surgery care expenses.

ACA is not a handout. ACA provided me with women’s health care. ACA insures everyday working people, but U.S. Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh threatens to take this all away. I urge Sen. Joe Manchin to stand up for his constituents like me and protect the ACA, particularly for people with pre-existing conditions.