hart

Uninsured for 10 years 11 weeks
Age
Occupation
Employment Status
Reason Lost Insurance
Family Income
Family Size
Uninsured Family Members
General Health
Being Uninsured Makes Me Feel

Up until 2009 I was able to manage the monthly health insurance payments that I pay for fully, being self-employed. With the economy tanking work just dried up and I had to make hard choices.

The medical industry in this country is clearly broken. Affordable options are needed for a large and growing segment of the population who work for themselves or as freelancers -- a move that some, like myself, have made for reasons of flexibility, and others have been been forced to make.

How does this lack of insurance affect me on a day-to-day basis? As Mark mentioned, there's a level of underlying tension around my health, and for me it leads to some unhealthy choices. Before I get on a bicycle I wonder what I would do if I get into an accident. Accidents do happen, but the act of cycling somewhere improves my health. So, perhaps ironically, I do make some choices that are less healthy in the long run due to insurance fears in the short term.

Why is this such a large fear? Incredibly high medical costs. A simple visit to the emergency room could wipe out my minimal savings. Anything more serious could bankrupt me. Or worse -- a hospital to deny me service based on my lack of insurance.