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A Pelvic Speculum is not a Political Tool

By Dr. Linda Burke-Galloway

Uncle Sam“A lie unchallenged becomes the truth” was the first thought that came to mind after watching a TV commercial depicting a “Creepy Uncle Sam” perform a pelvic exam on a screaming young woman in a desperate and highly offensive ploy to discourage young people from enrolling in “Obamacare” whose enrollment officially begins in less than a week.

The conservative group, Generation Opportunity, spearheaded by its 28 year old president, Evan Feinberg, is responsible for the offensive ad. The Affordable Care Act represents an historical opportunity to provide insurance for all Americans for the first time in 70 years. FDR couldn’t get it done, neither could President Clinton but both former presidents should receive an “A” for trying. It is quite obvious that the political wrangling has nothing to do with the healthcare plan itself but the “man” who sponsored it. The hail-Mary maneuvers will not work neither will the political temper tantrums and meltdowns. Obamacare is here to stay and as a physician who took care of Medicaid patients for my entire 27-year medical career, it is humbling to witness the door of healthcare access finally open for all Americans.

I still remember the mean-spirited oncologists in a Louisiana town who would not accept women with cancer as patients because they were either uninsured or had Medicaid. Or the colleagues who booted a pregnant woman from their practice although she was 37 weeks because she turned 19 and was no longer eligible under her mother’s insurance plan. Or the mental health patients who could neither receive psychiatric care or medication because they were uninsured. Hopefully, those days are over. Here are some facts about “Obamacare”:

• Pregnancy is no longer considered a pre-existing condition
• Preventive care such as mammograms and Pap smears do not require co-pays
• Young adults remain on their parents insurance plans until age 26
• Seniors will receive rebates for prescriptions
• The uninsured will receive private insurance and 6 out of 10 people will pay less than $100 per month for premiums which is less than a cell phone bill
• There will be subsidies and tax credits for small businesses

Need more information? Check out the website that not only explains the benefits of Obamacare but also allows one to sign up for insurance beginning October 1st.

The American people don’t need fear-based misinformation. They need political leaders that are willing to place patients over politics.

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