Per the 2016 National Health Interview Survey conducted by the Center of Disease Control and Prevention, the percentage of uninsured Americans is a low 8.6. Though 8.6 is the lowest percentage of uninsured people in American history, that percentage translates to roughly 28 million Americans, a large number, who are uninsured and thus less likely to seek medical attention outside of emergency room services. Those without health insurance are less likely to receive needed medical care and tend to pay more for it when they do. As someone who has a chronic heart condition, I cannot afford to be part of that 8.6 percent.
Like many Americans before me, I intend to acquire a Bachelor’s degree in English with Teacher Certification to continue my passion of teaching young children and to increase my income level. The Common Wealth Fund, a private organization that aims to improve the US Healthcare system through supporting independent research on matters of health care, has found that ” 39 percent of uninsured adults have incomes below the federal poverty line, twice the rate of their overall representation in the adult population. ” As of right now, my full-time position as a Therapeutic Preschool teacher puts my income far below the federal poverty line. Though my job is very fulfilling, guiding children through their mental disturbances and stress-filled home lives within a non-profit organization, there will come a day when I will need more. Being amply covered is ideal as I like to be well prepared for undesirable circumstances. The Common Wealth Fund also discovered through myriad of surveys and polls: ” Nearly two-thirds (64 % ) of uninsured adults who were aware of the [healthcare] marketplaces said they had not visited one to shop for coverage because they did not think that they would be able to afford it.” Pursuing higher education will make me more of an asset in the Education industry as a teacher which will in turn increase my income level. Having a higher education degree enables me to have job security within the Education industry as well as more options for healthcare. Facing my mortality at a young age only added fuel to this passion if mine.
At the age of twenty, I began to have fainting spells. They seemed at first to be random, but I soon found a pattern: standing for long periods of time or over-exerting myself aerobically. After many trips to the doctor for both non-invasive tests and invasive procedures, including but not limited to surgeries, and one defibrillator-pacemaker hybrid implant later, I can now safely take a shower for more than five minutes. Luckily for me, around the time that I began to have these health issues, President Obama extended the age a dependent can be claimed on a parent’s health insurance to 25 years old, as I was on the brink of being left uninsured. The year-long, bed-ridden search for the cause of my heart problems cost a total of three hundred thousand dollars, three thousand dollars of which I was responsible for paying back. If not for my mother being an employee for the State of California, my medical bill would have been much higher. Much like my mother could help me with my health problems, I need to be able to help my future children with theirs.
During my journey to find the root cause of my heart issues, I learned that my left ventricle is larger and weaker than is needed for my body and is a hereditary condition. Seeing the struggles that I went through to bring my heart rate up to a normal one became the catalyst that my mother and her sisters needed to make appointments with cardiologists for themselves. They too have abnormally large, weak left ventricles that was later discovered to be a trait we share with my mother’s mother, my mother’s aunt, and my mother’s grandmother, who all died due to heart complications that could have been managed had they been covered with health insurance. Having children of my own is in my future and it is imperative that I have sufficient health insurance. Not only for the multiple device replacements I’ll need every ten years of my life, but for my future children to get the medical care they need should their hearts be anything like mine. Receiving proper medical care, whether it’s for hereditary heart issues or routine checkups, can allow my future children to spend their time and efforts on growing up to be healthy, conscientious adults.
With medical insurance comes reassurance that I will be helped when I am hurting the most. Having a sense of security such as this can help me and my forthcoming children focus on building the skills and friendships necessary to enhance our communities. These healthy communities will add to the healthy future of America.
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