Dear Affordable Care Act,
Happy birthday, old friend! I can’t believe it was just three years ago that you were born – and I can’t believe in just three years what a difference you’ve made in our lives. You’re a wonderful, wonderful law, and I can’t thank you enough. My pre-existing conditions don’t count against me anymore. My health care access is protected. As a woman, my birth control is free! Children are guaranteed free preventive care, and I know that senior citizens on Medicare are seeing their out-of-pocket prescription drug expenses shrink every year. Our health is safer in your hands because of so many of your wonderful provisions.
Of course, the picture isn’t all rosy. In state after state, your dream of expanding Medicaid to all low-income citizens is becoming a reality, but here in Texas we’re fighting hard to make it happen. But you know what? I think we’ll win. I think we’ll win because of you, Affordable Care Act. Because for the first time in our nation’s history you have allowed people to think of health care access as a right, rather than a privilege. Because you have prioritized the radical goal of expanding coverage even to the sickest and poorest among us. In doing so, you have spelled out the logic of a system that protects the poor and the sick and the needy – as my mother used to say, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” and those pounds of cure have been adding up in a major way for American consumers. It’s time to spend some time with those ounces of prevention.
The Medicaid Expansion will happen – it has to happen – because in the end it means so much not just for individuals, but for us as a state, and for us as a nation. It means freedom and prosperity and a healthy future for the American people.
So thanks, Affordable Care Act. Thanks for protecting us, and thanks for letting us dream. We here in Texas will keep fighting to make your promise a reality: accessible, affordable health care for all. Happy birthday.
Texas Well and Healthy