• What the Affordable Care Act Has Done for Me

    I am a student with an active lifestyle; I never know when I’m going to injure myself. I play disc golf about four days a week and have sprained my ankles more times than I can count.

    The Affordable Care Act has impacted my life quite a bit, especially within the past 18 months. Beginning in August 2010, I served 10 months in the AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC), a federally funded, team-based program for 18- to 24-year-olds. During those 10 months, I worked with several nonprofit organizations in the southern region, doing everything from building houses in Alabama to promoting a biodiesel fuel program in Louisiana.

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    The day before I left for my first project with Habitat for Humanity, I injured my knee. And then halfway through my term, I also tore a tendon in my foot. I needed surgery. Thankfully, I was 24 and ecstatic to learn that I was able to stay on my father’s health insurance plan thanks to the Affordable Care Act – which allows young adults to stay on their parents’ insurance until age 26.

    Without health insurance, I would have been less likely to visit the medical specialists that helped me get the care I needed, because I would be worried about paying such high fees.

    In September 2010, I underwent arthroscopic knee surgery to repair my knee, followed by physical therapy. For my foot, I later wore an orthopedic boot, along with another round of physical therapy. But I didn’t let it stop me. My team did tornado relief work in Mississippi, and I was out there clearing debris – boot and all. Without a break on my medical bills, I probably would have had to drop out of the program and would not have been able to continue serving my country.

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    Since coming to the University of South Carolina in the fall 2011, I joined the disc golf team and have won first place in the women’s division at each of the collegiate tournaments I have competed in to date this school year. This April, I will be competing for the National Collegiate Women’s title. Without the proper care that health insurance has afforded me, none of this would have been possible.

    Friday, March 23 is the second anniversary of the signing of the Affordable Care Act. If you have a story to share, let us know at http://OFA.BO/aVai2o. To find out how healthcare reform is working for you, visit: http://OFA.BO/9NnSFu.

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