My father, Bill Robinson, passed away 10 years ago from complications related to End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD). Yet, he lived a relatively full, healthy and active life. Dialysis allowed him to continue living and working for 10 years.
As his primary caretaker, I saw firsthand the problems afflicting kidney patients. I witnessed many patients struggling to pay for life-saving treatment, which can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars per year. Luckily, my father had private health insurance to cover the costs of his treatment.
However, a recent Supreme Court decision may affect the lives of dialysis patients on private insurance by allowing insurers to kick these patients off of their plans before they can switch to Medicare, even though private insurance has for years been required to cover treatments for the first 30 months before a patient transitions to Medicare by law. This will stick patients with bills they simply can’t afford.
Members of Congress should put themselves in patients’ shoes and write legislation which prevents private insurers from kicking dialysis patients off of their plans before the traditional 30-month window.
Sherry Robinson, Louisville, Kentucky