I am angry, and you should be too.
|Photo by Stan Mouser|
Mostly, I listened, because there were some serious wonks on those panels, women and men who've spent their entire careers focused on healthcare policy and how to improve the system. I also asked a few questions.
Deep into a discussion on "high-risk pools" and the need to draw in "young immortals" to decrease overall insurance costs, I raised my hand.
"Hi. I was one of those 'young immortals' until I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer at age 32. Metastatic cancer in young people is on the rise, but people are also living longer with cancer. Cancer is expensive. What about lifetime and annual limits, which are currently prohibited under the Affordable Care Act?"
To which the response was, essentially, "Your life matters. I'm sorry for your experience. But trade-offs will have to be made."
Trade-offs. This is what we're up against, folks.
Here is what I learned, although nearly every speaker admitted we are all trying to read tea leaves at this point. No one really knows what a Trump administration is going to look like, but we do know that the Republican Congress of the last several years has voted to repeal the ACA more than 60 times.
One panelist likened it to a dog who finally caught the car. The question is what does the dog do now?