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Thu Oct 03, 2013 at 09:12 AM PDT

Obamacare and my friend's skin cancer

by tb92

My friend has had a growth on her nose for the last few years. Her father had skin cancer in that same spot, so we were reasonably concerned about it. But she didn't have it tested. She couldn't get insurance, and without the ability to pay for treatment, she saw no point in paying for a diagnosis.

But things are different now. Her tests results came in yesterday. Yes, it's basal cell carcinoma. Yes, it is operable. And yes, the surgery can wait until January. The doctors told her she was exactly the kind of person the new system was designed to help.

By treating it soon, instead of waiting until she could save enough to pay out of pocket, the treatment will be much easier, the damage done to her face much less severe. And although basal cell carcinoma is rarely fatal, it can be.

So here's one more life potentially saved, certainly improved, by the ACA. Thank you, President Obama. Thank you, to all the members of Congress who voted for it. Thank you, to all of you who gave time and money to get those Democrats elected. Thank you, to everyone who wrote a letter, made a call, or signed a petition. Together, we made a difference. We have every right to be proud.

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My Uncle was a good man. He was loyal to his wife and patiently cared for her quadriplegic son. He was Christian in the old fashioned sense of being kind and generous. He worked hard as a appliance repair man, and his customers trusted him. He was quiet and gentle and loving. And he died six months ago.

My uncle never thought to take care of himself. He had been in pain for years, but didn't bother to have it checked out. When it became too much to bear, his wife took him to the emergency room. They told him he had cancer. That it filled his entire abdomen. That he had less than a month to live.

And then they told him they could not help him, that he should just go home and wait to die. You see, my uncle's insurance, which he had paid into for decades, saw no point in paying for care for a man who could not be saved. And he was a bit too young for Medicare. The hospital wouldn't be paid, so there was nothing they were willing to do. He went to a second hospital, and was told the same thing. He wasn't offered any additional effort, any hospice, any real help at all.

His wife was heartbroken and terrified. She had NO idea how to take care of him. What would he need? How would they deal with the pain? Was there absolutely nothing that could be done? Panicked, she got on the phone and called the local teaching hospital, and they, thank the gods, knew what to do.

They put her in touch with a patient advocate, who convinced the insurance company that they damn well were going to pay for whatever he needed. The advocate arranged to have him admitted to the teaching hospital and to have appropriate tests done. When their last ditch efforts were clearly failing, she arranged for him to have the equipment and medication he needed at home. She educated his caregivers. She let them know they were not alone.

My aunt was told that this advocate position was created by Obamacare. Most of my family is conservative, but not at all politically aware. They had thought that Obamacare was something to fear. Now they know better.

My Uncle died at home, with his family, in no pain, with no fear. His last actions were to give a thumbs up to his brother and say, "I'm good". That wouldn't have happened without that advocate's loving work. And that is now what Obamacare means to my family.

Mark E. Anderson wrote a diary today about his first experience with Obamacare being a free physical. When I read it, I knew I had to share my experience. I hope others will continue the trend. This program is about to change our lives. We should document the experience.

No matter what else the President does or does not do, I will always be grateful for this.

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Thu Jan 24, 2013 at 03:28 PM PST

Obamacare may save my uncle's life today.

by tb92

My uncle is in the hospital, extremely ill. The first hospital he went to looked him over and sent him home. The second one admitted him, did some tests, and then told him there was nothing they could do and that he should go home to die. We assume the problem is that the insurance companies do not want to pay what it would take to help him.

My parents intended to hire a lawyer to fight the hospital and insist that they keep trying. But when I called to get details, I found that a lawyer was no longer necessary. My uncle has been provided with a patient advocate, thanks to the ACA.

Now, from what I've heard it is entirely possible that there is truly nothing that can be done for him. If so, we will at least have the comfort of knowing that he was sent home for the right reasons, that they did not deny him due to money. But if there is anything that they can do, Obamacare may save his life.

Much of my family is Conservative. They have spent the last couple of years worried and whining over their perception of what the ACA would do. But here, their very first actual contact with the new system is helping in a way that they had never dreamed possible.

When my mother told me where the assistance was coming from, I almost jumped with joy. This is how we will change minds. This is how we will bring people to our side. By helping them.

Thank you, Mr. President.

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Mon Aug 27, 2012 at 09:52 AM PDT

An Apology to the Feminists

by tb92

Today, on the 92nd anniversary of the 19th Amendment, I would like to apologize to the Feminists.

When I was younger, I thought they had outstayed their welcome. I appreciated the work they had done, but I thought it was over, the war was won. I didn't realize that the enemy had simply gone underground. In churches, in back rooms in DC, they were slowly becoming stronger, until a few years ago, they came out of hiding and attacked women's most basic rights. The Feminists warned us, but I just could NOT believe that this nation would go back. I was wrong, and because of the complacency of women like me, my daughters are now at risk.

Now, I know that the war is not just against women, and won't be fought by women alone. We are all in this together. But one of the front lines is being fought in women's lives and bodies. It didn't have to be this way, and I am so sorry that we've allowed it to happen.

I've contacted my local Dem candidate for Congress. I'll be volunteering for his campaign. I'll send what money I can to the President. I'll keep trying to make Republican voters understand that their leaders are endangering the lives of our girls. I'll keep encouraging all of you to do the same. If we don't fight back now, it will soon be too late.

If you like your freedom, your equality, the strong and capable women in your life, thank a Feminist.

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My friends, who want a child more than anyone I have ever met, have been in the hospital for almost a month, desperately trying to delay the birth of their little girl. Despite heroic efforts, she was born yesterday at 27 weeks, four days. She is under two pounds and very ill. She is at one of the best medical facilities in California, and getting the very best care. But the doctors can't guarantee if she'll survive, or how much brain damage she'll have if she does.

Please, send prayers, positive thoughts, well wishes, and healing energy her way. Sheer stubbornness has gotten them this far, and might be enough to see them through. But we'll take any help we can get. Please pray for Mirabella and her parents.

Thank you.

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Fri May 06, 2011 at 02:27 PM PDT

"Dad, who died?"

by tb92

Bin Laden died on his son's ninth birthday. The next morning, a loving father tries to answer an innocent child's question. Reprinted with permission from a dear friend.

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Carl Wimmer, Republican of the Utah House of Representatives, has an interesting view on the scope of his work. As Angry Mouse explains here http://www.dailykos.com/... he has written a law that would "remove prohibitions against prosecution of a woman for killing an unborn child or committing criminal homicide of an unborn child."

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