Jennifer, Suffolk County

My name is Jennifer and I am 40 years old. I live in Suffolk County. The costs of our restrictive healthcare system have made my health worse and contributed to my family’s bankruptcy.

After I had my spinal surgery, I couldn’t do my job anymore, so I lost my health coverage and couldn't afford the costs of seeing my surgeon for followup care. My back didn't heal properly and is still causing me much pain and discomfort, which also led me to develop anxiety that I can not presently treat because I cannot find a psychiatrist that accepts my current health insurance anywhere feasibly near where I live.

When I became eligible for Medicare for my unresolved back pain and issues, I began treatment with multiple doctors. I was billed for the 20% not covered by Medicare totaling in the thousands of dollars and was unable to pay. I ended up having to declare chapter 7 bankruptcy.

I support the New York Health Act because it would be less expensive and less restrictive, allowing for people to see any doctor they need to without having to make endless calls to insurance companies and doctors offices to see if they participate in a particular health plan. When people are going through major medical situations, they don't need the additional stress of high medical bills.