Healthcare Should Not Be Accessible Only to the Wealthy

Tarrytown, NY, NY
United States

My husband and I are now freelance musicians living in the NYC area. My husband and I have been freelance for much of our married life, working part-time jobs teaching in conservatories in Manhattan, teaching private lessons, doing residencies in public schools, performing, etc. My husband was offered a full time job at his institution about 5 years back, which he reluctantly took — he would get health insurance, the big clincher, since we were having a second child at the time, but it required 40 hours of both office work and teaching. As as composer, who lives and breathes music, a real creator, this was a big sacrifice. As his career progressed he was increasingly unhappy, not only to not have the flexibility to fulfill his dreams as a writer, producer, and pianist, but he found himself working for an administration with a goal that was in conflict with his ideals. As the conservatory went through changes and threatened collapsed due to the change in direction of the administration, my husband decided to leave. One of the big decisions was the new Obamacare that had just gone into effect, and we had found that suddenly the prospects of living our dream was not out of reach and that we would be able to realistically leave his job while transitioning to the self-employed world of building your own business and dream.

Shortly after my husband left his job, indeed the conservatory closed, and we applied for Obamacare and got a decent subsidy which has allowed us to manage our very difficult financial situation as we establish our own art space, private studios, relationships with educational institutions as private contractors, etc. We are extremely grateful for the affordable health care that has provided our two children with very good health insurance, and the two of us with a basic plan that has served our limited needs.

We have renewed for the coming year, the subsidy was adjusted slightly due to the drop in income that we experienced after leaving his former job, and we are only able to do what we are doing because of this help. My husband and I have been to a doctor maybe one time over the past 9 months, have maybe had to be on medication once, have taken very little "advantage" of the system, but simply are able to sleep well knowing that if something major happens we will not lose our home.

We are both frightened at what lies ahead as the new president takes his place, as we are not prepared to lose this subsidy at this difficult time of building our careers and providing for our two young children. We believe that we should not be required to sacrifice our dreams and passion at what we do best just to be able to pay for health insurance when we barely are sick, rarely go to the doctor. Thank you OBAMA for helping us realize our dreams, and providing every American the basics of human existence ... The cost of doctors when paying out-of-pocket, the cost of being hospitalized, is astronomical and should not be only accessible to the wealthy.