Health Care and Christianity: Where is the Line?

A subject that fascinates me is health care. As someone who went into her adult years with the label “preexistent” and uninsured, I have a special interest in this issue. I recognize that many Americans believe health care should not be a fundamental right of all people. I disagree vehemently with these people.

I did not go into adulthood being unable to be insured by myself. My father lost his job when I was diagnosed with cancer at age 9. Because he was unable and unwilling to buy Cobra insurance for me to be covered, I lost my insurance. When a person is diagnosed with cancer, he or she will be denied insurance for ten years. Ten years is generally accepted as the cure date and laws are in place to be certain when one reaches that point he or she cannot be denied insurance.

Are laws in place where insurance has to pay for medical procedures on those survivors? No. As a matter of fact, prior to being diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008, we actively searched for health insurance on me and companies laughed in our faces. One man was nice and told us I could be insured but we would be responsible for everything because so many of my systems had been affected by the cancer, cancer treatment, and Cowden Syndrome that everything could be written down as preexistent. The loopholes you hear so much about? Here is their loophole in regard to cancer survivors being insured post-diagnosis.

Health Care and Christianity Where is the Line
Health Care and Christianity Where is the Line

This type of belief system I can follow in regard to the general population. It is a “survival of the fittest” scenario out there. As Christians, are we not entitled to be different? Are we not asked to be compassionate and do what Jesus would do? I do not believe many of my Christian brothers and sisters understand our country’s health care system. When I told a friend my mastectomy surgery alone cost $40,000 she about fainted. Those who are not considered disabled and not SSI/Medicaid fall into a gap where they cannot receive adequate health care due to being unable to afford it. Perhaps you are thinking it is that person’s problem to not be able to afford it but in the county where I live $40,000 is the equivalent of an average family’s two year income. I use only the one surgery as an example. Had I underwent chemotherapy that cost would have been factored in as well as many other cost.

I write this article in an attempt to understand other people’s points of view on this issue. As human beings, we are slaves to our own experiences so perhaps there is something I am missing. Why are people who have preexistent conditions such as cancer excluded from insurance? Because it drives up insurance premiums for those who do not? How is that Christian? Christ told us to take care of the needy. Regardless of how it may seem, most of the people in my category of preexistent conditions are not people who refuse to work and want everything handed over to them. We are people given a very rough deal because society sees us as less than deserving.

So I ask specifically those of you who are Christians and who do not believe healthcare is a universal right what your reasoning is. I also ask if you or anyone in your family has experienced losing insurance and if that has affected your opinion. I am very curious about this topic. I know it will bring some not so happy comments to my comments section but I do not care. I want to know where the line is. When is it ok that a man waits so long to go to the doctor to be checked for cancer (due to no medical insurance from preexistent conditions) that it is too late when he gets there and he loses his life? Please reconcile this difference to me and my political views may do a 180 degree turn.