The repeal of the Affordable Care Act threatened to leave 15 million Americans without health care. I’m a young Montanan, a recent college grad, and a woman. All of this made me vulnerable to repeal and it would have been even more devastating to me since I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in December. Worse than learning to live with a chronic illness was navigating the health care system to ensure I have access to medication that keeps me alive. I now am insured by Medicaid and also benefit from Indian Health Services. It hasn’t been easy to figure this all out. My access to life-sustaining medication and care was under threat with the proposed repeal of ACA.

I’m not the only one who feared this repeal — 227,000 Montanans might have lost health insurance. ACA’s broad range of essential health care services including equipment, prescription drug coverage, and long-term care were threatened by a proposed 35 percent cut to Medicaid. Among many things, the GOP bill proposed lifetime caps and an increase in premiums that would have made being alive unaffordable to people like me. The Republican plan was not a health care bill, it was a tax cut that would have left me and many other Montanans to waste away.

I’m urging Sen. Steve Daines to please put the lives of Montanans first in the debate over health care.

Eleni Leona Haloftis

Billings

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