SERIES: Healthcare in America #12, Johanna Bard, This Is the Bronx

This is part of an ongoing series that gives Bronx writers a chance to share their personal stories on the state of healthcare in America.

by Johanna Bard, August 19, 2018

I miss my brother. A brilliant trial lawyer, working in the General Counsel’s office of a Fortune 100 company, Johnny was abruptly fired just before he turned sixty. I am, of course, biased about this tragic turn of events; just let me say that Johnny had argued (and prevailed) for his company multiple times before the Supreme Court (and many US Courts of Appeals) and the company’s judicial fortunes suffered after he left.

He took COBRA. It was jaw-droppingly expensive. He looked for a new job. Age discrimination is real. Prospective employers explained they couldn’t pay him what he was worth and they knew he’d jump ship if they offered what they could afford. Never mind that NYC is too expensive to be jobless and still pay rent. Johnny cut back on expenses, took Social Security early, began spending his savings — and then, after getting a physical, dropped his health insurance....

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