Oppose universal health care? Military doesn’t

I am a Navy veteran who served as a Hospital Corpsman for six years. While I was stationed in California, I treated active duty service members, retired service members and their dependents.

When I left the military in 1994 and began working in a civilian hospital, I was struck by how ill the community was. I chalked part of it up to the military population being healthier and younger, but the main reason the military population was healthier is that the military provides free health care on demand.

I support the Affordable Care Act because I have seen how access to preventative medicine makes a lasting impact on someone’s life. In the military, I didn’t treat patients who had visible signs of breast cancer because they could not afford to have a mammogram.

I did not see women waiting until their months-long abdominal pain became so overwhelming that they presented with massive ovarian tumors that could have been treated earlier, more easily, and with better outcomes. I did not see people who hoped and prayed that their ailments would go away only to find that by the time they could no longer ignore the pain or malformation, they were incredibly ill.

I support universal health care because I have seen the tremendous benefit and harm that comes without access to care.

Please consider your 17,000 8th District neighbors, families, and friends when contacting Rep. Dave Reichert, Sen. Patty Murray, and Sen. Maria Cantwell regarding possible changes to the Affordable Care Act.

– Beth Jervay

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