Obama Health Care Reform: What Real People Want

Obama Healthcare Reform What Real People
ESSENCE.COM Jun, 24, 2009

1 of 12

Last night, President Obama fielded questions and concerns about his plan for health care reform in ABC’s “Prescription for America Town Hall on Health Care.” Critics say his plan spends too much and the government just does not have the money.

We asked ESSENCE.com readers what they think about the current state of health care in the U.S., and whether or not the President has the power to change it.

Find out what folks like you had to say.

2 of 12

Age: 32
Hometown: New York City

“America’s health coverage is horrible. I’m a delegate for my union and we know that if you don’t have good enough insurance, hospitals don’t even keep you long enough when something is really wrong with you. People are ready for a change. They keep increasing taxes for nonsense so why not increase it for something more positive?”

3 of 12

Age: 21
Hometown: Bronx, New York

“A lot of underprivileged people are at a disadvantage to receive health care. There are people throughout the United States who don’t even know what type of health care opportunities are available to them. I do believe President Obama has the power to fix it.”

4 of 12

Age: 32
Hometown: Brooklyn, New York

“A friend of mine is an immigrant and she has a minimum-wage job with no health care. Obama has the power to change things but the likelihood is that it won’t happen. There’s too much red tape and he won’t be able to fix it all in eight years.”

5 of 12

Age: 26
Hometown: Baltimore, Maryland

“Our health care system is broken, destroyed, and trampled. I don’t have health care because I can’t afford it. It’s all about big business with little concern about people. At the end of the day, [insurance agents] don’t care if people live or die.”

6 of 12

Gabrielle Bernard
Hometown: Long Island, New York

“I would be willing to pay more taxes for a public health care system. It’s for the greater good of everyone else. I have a friend who didn’t have health insurance and she got into a car accident. She can’t go to school because she’s busy paying off her hospital bills.”

Kion Sawney
Age: 18
Hometown: Long Island, New York
“We were just talking about the health care system in France where apparently you can get eye surgery for about $20 while here it’s $12,000.”

7 of 12

Age: 25
Hometown: Philadelphia

“I just graduated from school on May 4, and now I don’t have health insurance. I just pray that I don’t get sick or need any medication. Medical care is not about service to the people. I don’t think President Obama is going to be able to make any changes to move it back towards our direction.”

8 of 12

Hometown: St. Louis, Missouri

“Its kind of like a trickle down effect-you have to penetrate the pharmaceutical industry first. They’re the ones who are charging the most money and then it goes up from there.”

9 of 12

Hometown: Brooklyn, New York

“As a recent college graduate, I’m walking around now without health care. From the moment I graduated, I was automatically kicked off my parents’ plan. Obama’s plan is a start, but it’s not necessarily going to work automatically­. It’s something to build upon.”

10 of 12

Age: 40s
Hometown: Brooklyn, New York

“Obama’s going to be able to nibble around the edges. We need real, systemic change along the order of single payers. I don’t think he supports that and I don’t think he’s going to bring about any change that’s enough to drive down the cost of health care. His heart’s in the right place. He’s trying to make things better for everyone.”

11 of 12

Hometown: Hollis Queens, New York

“Health care costs an arm and a leg and even if a company does give you insurance, you have to pay a co-pay, which I don’t think is fair. I’m hard working, why do I need to pay a co-pay to see a doctor? Congress and the health care profession itself with its big money-making idealism are not going to allow Obama to make the change.”

12 of 12

Age: 39
Hometown: Jamaica Queens, New York

“I believe Mr. Obama will try but he’s going to meet some resistance. I hope more of us in the African-American community will be approved for health insurance because too many of us don’t have any at all.”

More on Obama’s historic presidency »

Reporting by Mavis Baah and Shavon S. Greene

Tell us what you think about President Obama’s speech last night.


# News


# News