When people have access to health care coverage,
they do better.
That's a fact that's been proven over and over again. However, in the next few years, there will be attacks on these bi-partisan bedrocks of health coverage through attempts to pass block grants that will drastically cut our health care funding, as well as take away the protections that our residents currently have.
These changes will create upheaval in our health care system unlike any that we’ve seen in decades, and will affect TennCare, Medicare, the Marketplace, and every single person who has private insurance.
In the days to come, we must make sure that the millions individuals and families in Tennessee who benefit from programs that are at risk do not lose their coverage. We will stand with our clients for affordable, quality health care, and we invite you to join us by taking action. Our health is at stake.
Who would be affected by changes?
The stories below are people whose health insurance is at risk in the coming years. The changes that may be coming not only put them at risk, but damage their families and their communities as well. Do you have a story to tell? Click here to share it.
Martha has worked hard for her entire life. After losing her job, she couldn’t afford to pay for medical expenses and ended up sick in the hospital. Now that the Affordable Care Act is around, she has gotten back on her feet and is healthy again. Repealing the ACA is a matter of life and death for people like her.Read More
John is a musician who has lived through a host of different health problems. Before the Affordable Care Act, he accumulated debt from an accident. However, after getting covered he was able to get treatment for kidney cancer and because of that he is now in remission. John has experienced life before and after the ACA and knows how much better things are because of it.Read More
Brynda has always dreamed of starting her own psychology clinic and because of the Affordable Care Act, that dream has come true. The ability to get affordable and quality insurance means that Brynda has been able to help hundreds of patients. If the ACA is taken away, all of those patients will be at risk.Read More
Deborah lost her brother, Gary, in a tragic car accident back in 2003. Until the Affordable Care Act, Gary’s wife struggled with bad hips that disabled her. Having coverage through the federal marketplace made it possible to get her hips fixed so that she could live her life and raise her three children the way she wants to.Read More
Nina is a breast cancer survivor who started a nonprofit for other breast cancer survivors. She is scared of what the repeal of the Affordable Care Act will mean for herself and the women that she works with. She doesn’t want anyone, especially people with cancer, to fear that their insurance will disappear.Read More
Joyce used to pay for medical bills out of pocket because insurance was so expensive. When her family got insurance through her husband’s employer, she realized the importance of coverage. The Affordable Care Act became the foundation for affordable insurance and peace of mind when she moved to Tennessee.Read More
Amber recently graduated from the University of Tennessee at Martin with degrees in political science and legal studies. If the ACA were to be dismantled, the cost of treating her neurological disease would mean that her dream of going to law school would not come to fruition.Read More
Madelyn Cousin works full-time as well as volunteering with First Things First. She suffers from diabetes and cancer but thanks to the Affordable Care Act she has been able to get the treatment she needs. If it weren’t for the ACA, it would have been far too expensive to visit a doctor.Read More
Robin Pearman is 62 and soon to retire to take care of her aging father. She didn’t know how she was going to be able to afford health insurance, until she enrolled in the Obamacare Marketplace. “I was almost in tears when [I learned] how affordable the plan was,” Robin said. “I was tickled to death. I’m so very grateful.”Read More
Tim and Marjorie Riley depend on the help that the affordable care act provides them. Without it, Marjorie would not be able to treat her multiple sclerosis and their family would go bankrupt again. Having coverage means Tim and Marjorie are able to stay healthy and serve their community with their active volunteering.Read More
Jill Hodges and her husband, Stephen, live in rural East Tennessee. Both of them have needed emergency surgeries that would have cost them their farm had it not been for their marketplace insurance. The Affordable Care Act has not only saved their lives, but it has saved them their home.Read More
Patricia worked hard to graduate college and secure a job with the state of Tennessee. When her Hepatitis C became debilitating, she had to quit her job and leave behind her former insurance. If it weren’t for the ACA, she would not have been able to find an affordable plan that would cover her preexisting condition.Read More
Stephen worked at the waste water treatment plant in Chattanooga, his home town since graduating from college. Some time later, his wife was diagnosed with a rare genetic neurological disease. The ACA was essential in keeping his own heart problem in check so that he could retire early and take care of his wife until her passing.Read More
Andrea is a new teacher who is committed to volunteering with local reading programs. Thanks to the ACA, she was able to stay on her parent’s insurance until she turned 26 which meant having help taking care of her autoimmune disease. Repealing the ACA would be devastating to her medical care.Read More
Paula Hurt went into surgery unsure what was causing her symptoms. She came out of surgery with a cancer diagnosis. While in surgery, her coverage was cut, and the only other plan she and her husband could find cost $2200 a month, and it didn’t even cover her chemotherapy. But then came President Obama’s Affordable Care Act. “The ACA was a God-send,” Paula said, “[It] saved my life.”Read More
Susan Fortner, a single mother of three, used to worry constantly about her daughter’s seemingly incurable urinary problems. Having to pay out of pocket was quickly becoming a problem. When Susan finally got marketplace insurance for her family, her daughter was able to see a specialist and get her condition under control.Read More
Earl Manier was injured at work moving pallets on a tractor trailer. His health insurance premium skyrocketed, and he had to find something more affordable. Then the Affordable Care Act became law, and Earl got a plan. “This health insurance of President Obama saved me from losing every thing my wife and I had,” he said.Read More
In December 2015, James Bandy was able to retire. But that also meant he lost health coverage. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, James was able to purchase a low-cost plan on the Marketplace. “If anything happens to my coverage, I couldn’t go the doctor like I need to. Couldn’t afford it … In my opinion, the Affordable Care Act is the best thing that’s ever happened for the poor guy that couldn’t afford insurance. I know a lot of people that have insurance now that didn’t go to the doctor before cause they didn’t have insurance.”Read More
Vicki is really all the family her aunt Tommie has left. After Tommie’s husband died, Vicki has been her primary caretaker. But without TennCare, Vicki wouldn’t be able to afford the care Tommie needs. “If TC hadn’t of stepped in, I mean, we wouldn’t have let [Tommie] go to the streets, but I couldn’t take care of her. I don’t know where she would be without TennCare.”Read More
Antonio Lopez was 42 when he got an affordable health insurance plan on the Obamacare Marketplace. One month later, his heart failed, and he needed life saving surgery. “The insurance card I had in my wallet,” he said, “was my ticket to receiving life-saving heart valve replacement surgery.”Read More
Don Adams is disabled. All his doctors say so. He’s got diabetes, spinal stenosis, and he’s had five heart attacks. For a time, he couldn’t get health insurance, and his health care bills piled up. But finally, he was approved for TennCare, a change his wife Penny says “saved him.”Read More
Lewella Woods had a stroke at 15 months old. Ever since, she’s needed constant care. Now 56, TennCare gives her the medical assistance she needs to survive. Her sister Mary is grateful. She knows how much #coveragematters because without it, “life would just be a struggle.”Read More