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Tracy C. Heiman's picture

Our 7-year old son has been battling a rare cancer called a sarcoma for over 3 years. Unfortunately, this disease will be treated as a chronic condition for the rest of his life. I was so grateful and relieved the night that health care reform was finally passed back in December of 2009. We personally stayed up during the late hours of the night to watch the votes being counted – and we were on a family vacation in Florida.

We squealed with joy when it passed. Cancer lays a heavy burden on families, but add in the exclusion which exists in our country because of health insurance tactics – this contributes to heavy financial losses and bankruptcy of many families.

How much more pressure do families have to face along with the devastation of the disease? Lack of insurance coverage to care for your child? Health care reform was been one giant step forward in doing what is right in our country and its people and families. With the passing of reform, I have relief that my son until the age of 19 will not be denied coverage for a pre-existing condition. I have relief that my son will not have to face an annual or lifetime limit for his care. I have relief that my son can stay on our health insurance plan until the age of 26. Our insurance company cannot drop us from the plan when we need insurance the most.

There may not be a cure for my son’s sarcoma at this time, and this fact weighs heavily for our family. But knowing that health care insurance, because of reform, has been improved and a safety net has been put into place, we can have some peace.

With the new Congress, we again are fearful that reform could be repealed and that would be devastating for so many Americans. Our story is just one, but please remember that we are not alone in our story. There are thousands and thousands of Americans like us– fighting to keep our country moving forward for the hope for change.

Tracy is a MomsRising member from Boulder, CO.

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