UNDERSTANDING THE LATEST ON OBAMACARE
The Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare, is the law of the land. That means many people buying their own health insurance continue to receive tax credits that significantly lower their monthly cost. Still, there are lawmakers interested in repealing Obamacare. As your cooperative, we are not interested in the politics surrounding Obamacare, we only care about what’s right for our members. We need a better way to provide coverage and health care to people, something we believe is possible if we put people ahead of politics. We need lawmakers from both sides of the aisle to realize the importance of building a bridge to a better system. In the meantime, we need to stop undermining the consumer protections that are part of Obamacare, and instead get to work on fixes that would make it better. We need to focus efforts on the underlying costs that lead to higher health insurance rates.
The most recent threat to Obamacare has come from a lawsuit that challenges the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act. It’s possible that at the very least, this lawsuit could weaken or eliminate preexisting condition protections for consumers. We don’t think this is right, and we recently sent an email to our members explaining what’s going on. Click here to view it. We hope it is helpful to you.
What can you do?
- In this election year, we continue to beat the drums for health care reform that gets to the heart of the problem: the cost of healthcare. This is something that people from all political parties can agree on.
- If you believe as we do that we need to build a bridge to a better health care coverage system before we destroy the old one, make your voice heard. Whatever you believe, make your voice heard during this election season while lawmakers are listening.
Member Story - Chelsea W. from Milwaukee
I am writing to share my story about making my voice heard as you encouraged us to do on your website. I called Ron Johnson’s office today. I left a voicemail explaining that when I turned 23, I was taken off my parent’s insurance. I didn’t have healthcare for six years after that, despite working more than full time as a nanny during the recession. In those years, I had bronchitis, tonsillitis, and salmonella. I had to take some risky measures or pay steep fees that I couldn’t afford to overcome those illnesses.
I’m 33 now. I have health insurance through the Affordable Care Act and Common Ground Healthcare Cooperative. I can’t go back. I’m earning more now, but I’m afraid of what will happen and I have reason to be.
The costs of healthcare are so extreme in this country, I believe there are many people who knowingly or unknowingly choose to die rather than get the care they need. My friend Alta, who lived in Indiana, chose to drive herself to the hospital when she was having a heart attack because she was already saddled with over $20,000 in debt from a back surgery. She passed away shortly after her arrival. She chose to risk death rather than pay for an ambulance because of the healthcare costs. It’s infuriating!!
I’m thankful that this cooperative exists!
PLEASE, SHARE YOUR STORIES
AND QUESTIONS WITH US!
We want to hear your views and your questions. If you contacted your lawmaker, please send us an email explaining your views so we can share these stories as we advocate on behalf of our members. If you have questions about changes to the Affordable Care Act, please send them our way and we’ll do what we can to answer them.
Tips for Getting Your Message Heard
The best way to get your point across to an elected official is to speak from the heart. Personalize and humanize your message by writing about how the issue affects you or others in your life personally. Explain the reasons why the issue is important to you, and be as specific as possible about the outcome you’d like to see. If you are part of a larger group with concerns about the particular issue, be sure to mention that as well.
The first one or two lines of your message should exhibit how strongly you care about an issue. This is the most important thing to include in your message and right up front. You should end the message by asking the lawmaker to respond to you and explain their position.
The link we’ve provided on this site provides access to an automated tool that will send an email to your lawmaker. You can contact your lawmaker outside of this tool by click here for their contact information.
You might consider sending your message to your state elected officials that represent you as well. You can send a copy to the Governor and state lawmakers. You can find their contact information by clicking here.
Need Talking Points?
We encourage you to put your message to your Senator or Congressperson in your own words. But if you’d like some ideas on what you can include, feel free to use the following points. Pick and choose among the them as some may not be applicable to you.
- We would like our elected officials to put the best interests of consumers at the forefront of the health reform debate.
- We need to get serious about the root causes of rising health costs. Today, many people cannot afford to get sick. It’s about the underlying prices charged by certain doctors, hospitals, drug companies and so on.
- Something needs to be done about the rising cost of prescription drugs.
- Emergency room charges are exorbitant. There should be law against surprise balance bills when you have to go out of your insurance company’s network for emergency care.
- There should be legislation that makes being sent to collections over medical debt illegal, especially when a bill is in dispute!
- We want more health insurance choices. Please preserve and protect insurance company competition.
- We need to know that you will stand up and fight for our best interests. (Or, I voted for you and I need to know that you will stand up and fight for what is right for me and many other Wisconsinites).
- I would not be able to afford insurance or heath care without the financial assistance provided to me through Obamacare (or the Affordable Care Act). Please work to keep insurance affordable.
- People are worried about losing their health insurance coverage overnight. Wisconsin citizens need their lawmakers to assure us that there will be time to adjust to any changes.
- The Affordable Care Act is too important to millions of US citizens to toss aside without trying to fix it. Our health care is too important to play politics with it.
PREFER TO CALL?
That’s great news, because a phone call is actually more effective than an email. The link below will take you to a website where you can find the phone numbers for your federal, state and local officials. If you don’t know the name of your elected officials, you can click the other link which will take you to a page where you enter your address and find out who represents you in Washington and in Madison.
LAWMAKERS RUNNING FOR OFFICE
During the 2018 mid-term elections, Wisconsin will vote to elect many important political offices that can influence how much you pay for health care and health insurance. The myvote.wi.gov website will show you what offices you will elect in November. Just enter your address to pull up a sample of your ballot.
Everyone in the state of Wisconsin will elect a governor (Scott Walker vs. Tony Evers) and a US Senator (Tammy Baldwin vs. Leah Vukmir). There are also several US Congressional seats and state legislators that are up for consideration this November. To ensure you make an informed choice, we recommend visiting the campaign websites of the individuals whose names you see on your ballot and clicking on the issues that mean the most to you.
Get important updates on Common Ground Healthcare and the ACA