Amidst the rancor and the tumult and the seemingly endless (and mindless) riveting punditry presented by mainstream media, somehow the narrative of meaningful healthcare reform in America has been reduced to covering tracking polls and the latest whopper or outrageous behavior of nutjobs living in their “miniverse.”
In the meantime, a neighbor just found out that not only will her insurance company not cover a biopsy for the lump in her breast, the hospital is requiring payment - up front and in cash. Cash that she does not have.
And Rhonda pays more for medication than she does for rent. She can’t get health insurance because of her pre-existing condition and struggles just to get by having to ration her life saving medication in order to make ends meet.
It’s time to put “faces and voices” back into the healthcare debate. And that’s what we are doing in North Carolina.
We have nearly 1.6 million residents with no healthcare insurance in North Carolina. More than 10,000 of our families will be forced into bankruptcy because of health related issues this year. People can’t retire, can’t change their jobs, and can’t start new businesses because of the health insurance practices in this country. And someone in every family is one disease or one accident away from finding out first hand what it means to have to fight for your health while having to fight the healthcare insurance industry. This is wrong and needs to change.
Now we have gathered thousands of signatures on petitions, collected and delivered thousands of postcards and letters, placed thousands of phone calls, and visited our elected Congressional leaders in their offices. And it is still not enough. What more can we do?
A new initiative, dubbed HealthcareWithHeart, was formed to complement the traditional ways to communicate with our elected leaders (and with each other). In the past two weeks, volunteers have pooled together their resources and talent to create a website that folks can share and view personal healthcare stories on video. The Website is up and running, albeit in a nascent form. Copy and paste (if you must) at http://healthcarewithheart.org
A logo was contributed for the cause by local artist Steven R. Miller of Art With Hearts.
And professional videographers (many with their own healthcare stories) have embarked on a project to create a documentary to portray the struggles and the daily realities of living within a healthcare system that is simply broken.
This is to invite you to visit the Website and follow our progress. Perhaps you will order a T-shirt to help the cause or even make a small donation for the documentary production team.
A primary goal is to produce a compelling documentary that will find its way into the offices of all our NC Congressional leaders and to share our personal healthcare stories.
Of course, the canvassing and the phone calls and the office visits are important and will continue. Please feel free to share your comments and share a link to this diary with others.