One paragraph of Obamacare saved this boy’s life


This is Timmy. He’s Six, and he lives with his parents
and little sister in a town between Washington, DC and Baltimore. “He insisted on a trash themed 5th birthday party. We decorated the whole house with recycling He’s into Angry Birds and monsters. He’s drawing, he’s writing. He’s reading really well. Timmy was born 7 weeks before his due date. He was only 3 pounds 9 ounces. He spent the first five months of his life
in the NeoNatal Intensive Care Unit (or NICU). Timmy has a rare genetic condition which requires
him, among other things, to breath through a tube in his throat and get most of his food
through a tube in his abdomen. Every room in Timmy’s home doubles as a
medical supply stations for his daily medical needs. But when you’re around him, it’s impossible
to avoid Timmy’s amazing energy — a 6 year old bursting with vivid imagination, fixated
on trucks, legos, and building binoculars out of toilet paper rolls. Timmy’s mom Michelle is showing us the medical
bills from that NICU period. Timmy’s been put under anesthesia 42 times,
and between all the surgeries, medicine and intensive care, the bills added up quickly
Michelle: “773,000 dollars by the time he was 2.5 months old. We figure by 3, or 3.5 months we hit a million.” Like many insurance plans, Timmy’s policy
had a clause which caps how much the insurance company will pay over his lifetime, cutting
him off once he hits a certain dollar amount. This is called a lifetime maximum. Timmy’s lifetime maximum was one million
dollars which he hit within just a few months of being in the NICU. According to his policy, after he hit a million
dollars of care, he would be on his own. But something happened just six days before
Timmy was born that would dramatically affect him and his parent’s lives. “The patient protection and affordable care act goes into affect today” “The new healthcare reform bill kicks in today.” “Health insurers can no longer impose lifetime limits or discriminate against kids with preexisting conditions. “The issue of lifetime limits: that is not going to be the law any more after tomorrow. ” The Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, is
best known for requiring insurers to cover people with preexisting conditions and letting
kids stay on their parents’ insurance til age 26. But one of the lesser-known parts of the law
is that it banned insurers from putting a cap on how much care they will pay for over
a year or over a lifetime. This came right in time for Timmy’s family. “He would have lost his insurance
at a million dollars which would have been about half way thru the NICU stay. I think we have $4000 dollars in savings right
then which would have covered less than a day of care in the NICU and I don’t know
what would have happened. See, we’ve only experienced life post Obamacare. Before Obamacare, 60% of all bankruptcies
in the US filings were tied to medical bills. And it was the sickest patients with complicated
blood infections and heart conditions who were losing their insurance due to lifetime
limits. These are the patients who needed insurance
the most. When the family moved to Maryland they intentionally looked for a new insurance company so that they could start from zero in case lifetime limits came back. But even on this new plan they are getting close to a million dollars. “As of this morning, it’s at
985,147.19. That’s for the current insurance plan we
are on now which started when he was 8 months old” You’re not eight yet. How old are you? Six I said 8 months. Do you know how old 8 months is? It’s when you were a little baby. You couldn’t even walk. As of now Timmy and his parents are safe from
a lifetime limit to his benefits. But 20 miles away, congressional republicans
and President Donald Trump are working on dismantling the law that got rid of lifetime
limits and saved Timmy’s health coverage Republican replacement plans are split between
staying with unlimited coverage and reimposing the lifetime limit. A late February draft of a Republican bill
would keep the ban on lifetime limits — which would be good news for Timmy. But legislators say this is far from the final
version, and likely to change significantly But overall, the lifetime maximum issue is
not a huge part of the debate, which mostly focuses on things like “pre existing conditions. And allowing folks to stay on their parent’s insurance until the age of 26 But for Timmy’s parents who have a good
employer provided health insurance plan, the lifetime limit issue is the only thing that
matters in this debate. That’s the only thing we think about. I mean more so than the preexisting thing. Actually when you said the other day when we were talking you were like “Oh the lifetime maximums dont get covered enough” I was like “really?” Bedtime in the Morrison home looks similar
to bedtime in many homes with story books and stuffed animals. But things are more complicated. Once a week, Timmy’s parents replace his
throat tube. This is one of many steps that is Timmy’s
family goes through to keep him healthy. But Timmy and his family have a routine to
manage all of his care. It consists of lot of medical supplies, equipment,
help from nurses and doctor’s visits. This routine has been enabled by the fact
that the Morrisons don’t have to worry about Timmy’s insurance going away once they hit
a million dollars. But this dependable routine in under threat
as the healthcare debate may result in lifetime limits coming back. If that happens, Timmy could lose his insurance
and this predictable if complicated routine will be turned upside down. You know we’re not trying to say that it’s not our responsibility to be paying for his care. I mean that’s our responsibility. It’s just that the reason you have insurance is that’s so far above what’s possible. So I guess I don’t want to come across as saying that I want someone to swoop in and pay for everything. That’s not what I’m saying. But we want it to be manageable. Something that we have some hope of paying.

100 thoughts on “One paragraph of Obamacare saved this boy’s life

  • This made me really appreciate NHS, I'd like to wish the best of luck to this family and any families that have a similar problem in the US.

  • What? What's that? Another reason I'm disappointed in this country? Alright, I'll add it to the list if I can ever find the bottom of it.

  • WHY IS THIS A THING, IN AUSTRALIA, LITERALLY EVERYTHING THAT IS CONSIDERED MAJOR HEALTH PROBLEMS ARE PAYED FOR BY THE INSURANCE
    the little things like dental care is still like $100 – $1000

  • I waighed like 2.11 pounds when I was born and was in the nicu as well my mother made a blog let me know if you want to go to the website it covers most of my early life until I was six I think. And I 10 weeks premature but I now understand how sick me and my twin brother could have become I extremely grateful for the nicu staff and my parents. Sorry for misspelling I am type into on my phone.

  • I wonder if parents have been arrested for negligence when maximum life time limit hit and parents werent able to continue care and the child dies.

  • Video: talks about how American healthcare saved a boy's life

    comments: amernican heanlthcaere sunke

    yes it sucks but no it is not the worst in the world

  • So basically (before Obamacare) you get and insurance to not go bankrupt because of this unexpected costs, and the most costly ones (that are the ones that would surely make you go bankrupt) were precisely not covered. “Lifetime limit”? You gotta be kidding me, health isn’t business, life isn’t business

  • As an Australian I can't comprehend this. I literally struggle to comprehend the fact that people are required to have health insurance, that may end up having limits imposed, just to live. Here I am, complaining that not all medications are on the pbs and that sometimes sick enough to access those medications is too sick. But it's never been a case of near death. I have never had to worry about going bankrupt because of health or health care.

  • It’s so upsetting that this is how it is now. If this is the standard for a great America to Trump, than his standards should change. It’s not fair to dictate someone’s life like this for money. Getting rid of what should be human rights for people isn’t a better America. It’s ridiculous

  • Thank you Obama. I know you weren't able to do everything you wanted for us, but you still helped those who needed it the most.

  • Can we stop arguing about politics and agree that this system worked for timmy, and worked for so many others.

  • The problem is not just insurance is also how much the fuking hospital charges you. The hospital are also out of control

  • Trump's intending to kill people like Timmy. And worse, people SUPPORT dismantling Obamacare.
    I hate rich white bastards who only care about the other rich bastards.

  • Welcome to the wonderful world of capitalism ~

    Honestly you need to understand that our Nation has a horrible comfort to convenience food and a lot of you guys will have preexisting conditions due to high blood pressure, diabetes and cholesterol. I'm not saying all of you but majority do not look at serving portions and tend to take on trends which are ridiculous. I have family member who was born with ESRD, started dialysis at 10, had transplant at 14 and had to go back to dialysis at 18. He's 28 now and still on dialysis, waiting for transplant and had over 30+ procedure/surgeries. We are the only Nation in the world who charge patients for live saving treatment like chemotherapy and hemodialysis. You have to know some of these companies who say they are for patients are really not and a lot of them have been sued but due to settlements they just settle most litigations. That's sadly how our society views healthcare. It's about how much can we charge insurance coverage for basic human rights. Hope Timmy grows up healthy.

  • American "health care" just after someone goes bankrupt poof there goes the contract and they are now DYING AND THEY DIE BECAUSE OF THE AMERICAN HEALTH CARE SYSTEM LUCKILY THE NHS GIVE FREE HEALTH CARE

  • We have all these countries with free healthcare and then we just have America 😂 I hope one day I get to see a president that can fix our urgent problems

  • NO, it's not your responsibility to pay those medical bills, it's your government's responsibility!!

  • I don’t have Obama-care, I have really bad anxiety and if I ever have an extreme anxiety attack where I blackout or past out from overheating I would never want someone to call an ambulance because they can cost over 6,000 dollars just to have a ride.

  • You love your child and all but god damn i'd be resentful for the debt having a kid with that many issues would cause me. No matter how much you love your child you'd still be resentful regardless of what lie you tell yourself or other people.

  • I have both a public employer insurance from my mom, and a paid insurance from my father. Both of them found out about my hipertiroidism, and started to get treatment on the paid one to avoid depending on paperwork for meds. 6 years later and I'm still on meds, knowing all too well that if they hadn't found out that day, I would have died long ago. I never knew how much it costed the insurance, but I know 2 things, one, I would be dead on America for my pre existing condition. Two, even here in Argentina I rely on public insurance if I decide to leave the paid one, because others won't accept me thanks to my condition or make me pay more. It reminds me of America, sometimes

  • He’s like me. Born a date when it’s not complete 12 months.
    That happened to me…I’m born 7 months.

  • Tbh.
    Most people will never use much of their health insurance.
    No where closet to a million dollars worth of it..
    Insurance companies should have tons of money left over for the ones that do then.
    And anyone fighting to repeal Obama care better not claim to be "pro life"
    Because.. Your going to kill children..

  • It’s pretty sad how misinformed people tend to be about “Obamacare.” The mandate, like much of the Affordable Care Act, was originally a Republican idea.

  • Interesting
    I have no idea how much my healthcare and medicine is
    Probably because i have never seen the bills
    Go 🇨🇦

  • I don't understand how some people would support someone who wants to cancel a law that literally gives them Healthcare it doesn't make sense…

  • I am so beyond thankful that I live in the UK for this kind of situation. We are so blessed to have the NHS on hand whenever we need them. However, I do feel that whenever we receive treatment, we should be sent a letter with the cost of treatment on it, to ensure every patient in the UK understands completely how blessed we are that we don't have to pay for it.

  • The very fact that universal healthcare is not a thing seems to be a pure violation of basic human rights, its outrages that so many people are stuck paying high prices because of this messed up system that allows people to suffer from illness that could be cured easily is unacceptable. The U.S. healthcare system needs to changed.

  • Im from the Philippines but,

    We are the third poorest country in the world,

    Yet we cover up our expenses (mostly)

    Blame USA GOVERNMENT!!

    P.S srry if I offended you

  • yeah yeah beautiful wealthy progressive America …
    can not even save its children what a shame

    i wish nothing but the best for Timmy and his family

  • I have no idea how much my apendectomy was. I have no idea how much my doctor's appointments are. I have no idea how much it was to have the IUD implanted. Because in the UK we have Universal Healthcare and if my taxes are helping pay nurse's and doctor's wages and keeping someone supplied with free insulin or heart medication then GOOD because that's why I pay my taxes! So people who are worse off than me can have good free healthcare!

  • Wow. I've always thought that the healthcare system and laws in my country aren't good until I saw this.
    I hope it gets better in America soon.

  • I'm so glad he is alive. I love him… trash theme birthday and toilet paper binoculars :):I really hope doesn't deport all the immigrant kids with cancer:*(

  • Thank god I’m argentinian. Here we pay about 200$ a month to insurance if we want private healthcare, but if not, the state
    provides with free healthcare, medications and treatments.

  • Timmy just melted my heart nd his sister too.. I wish them both all the lovely things that life could possibly have. Timmy's smile just made me so happy.. Thanx to him

  • I live in Australia and for my whole life healthcare has been free. If your sick you just go to the hospital and get looked after. America is so weird.

  • Sometimes, I wonder what would happen if such kids were aborted before being born, and saved medical bills were used to vaccinate thousands of people around the world.

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