I am almost 60, an SLE patient who has no insurance coverage. I was hospitalized in May 2011 with low platelets (~37,000 when normal is !50,000-400,000+. I was in danger of bleeding to death internally. I went to the county charity clinic, where I met with the most incredible incompetence. Mostly, they just don't treat the poor patients with the same kind of respect and concern I got/get from doctors I pay. I have retained my private rheumatologist, although I didn't go for a year, and that's why we didn't catch the platelet issue until it was so severe.
Now I cannot take the medication that was keeping my lupus at bay because it destroys platelets. I also cannot take aspirin or NSAIDs such as Ibuprofen for the pain in my joints. Nor can I afford the medication I need, Ben Lysta. Why? It's $2000-$3000 a pop, and the first three doses are to be taken 2 weeks apart and then once a month after that. I am still taking prednisone, which isn't really controlling my lupus, and my doctor estimates will take 5 years off my life.
I have been turned repeatedly for SSDI, despite the fact I cannot walk more than about 100', suffer from exhaustion so badly that I often require 12-14 hours of sleep, and suffer pain in my joints on a daily basis. Right now I am taking 50 mg of Tramadol 4 times a day to get through the days. I'm not old enough for SS & Medicare, and if Congress raises the age requirement, I won't live long enough to collect. Even if they don't, I might not live long enough to collect.
My husband has high blood pressure, and he is not covered either. We lost our insurance when your friends the Koch brothers outsourced his job to India in 2009. He has not found a job. The first year, he didn't even get a nibble at anything suitable. So he took care of my late 80s mother and me, the house and the yard, the shopping, the laundry, theerrands. Mother died 21 November 10, and in the midst of her final days and the funeral, he got a call from a headhunter, which he missed because he was ferrying me around and sitting with my mother in ICU, and taking care of my needs. By the time he got the message, it was too late.
My brother is an attorney, and he has been paying all our bills, including house maintenance and some modifications for my condition, and supplying all our basic needs. I have a computer because he believes, that since I am often housebound, I need the intellectual stimulation. We also have a television because we never go to movies unless we get free tickets. He has also been paying for my medical care. He is 62 and about to retire from the law.
I had a friend who died from a curable cancer in 2009. He had no insurance, and could not pay for the ongoing treatment. So he got a pain prescription and died a long slow death.
My cousin, who is bipolar, has a heart condition, and is in charge of her 58 year old mentally challenged sister, had a breakdown not long before their Alzheimer's patient mother died. She had no insurance, and despite her pleas, the EMS took her to the NEAREST hospital instead of the charity one. They said that was their policy. She now has a $25,000 bill from that NEAREST hospital, an income under $20,000 a year, and goes to the charity clinic run by the county. If she has a heart attack, the EMS will take her to the NEAREST hospital, where she will once again incur charges she cannot afford. The NEAREST hospital to her house is about 5 blocks away and a for-profit institution. It's also the nearest one to my home. So guess where the EMS would take my husband or myself if we have a medical crisis at home?
We have elected to die rather than have that happen. If we were eligible for medical care under your plan, we would not be able to afford the premiums. the only quote I have gotten is close to $2000 a month. So yes, Mr Romney, people ARE dying for lack of insurance, and it is not because we have "chosen" not to be covered. You simply do not have any concept of the realities of live for the unemployed, the disabled, the underemployed, the working poor, or anyone in the REAL middle class (which, statistically is about $30,000 to $80,000, NOT those making $150K - $500K., as you seem to think.
Look through my posts. I invited your equally clueless wife to come viist me some montjhs ago. I promise you, we could give an education you've never had.