At my heaviest, I weighed over 310 lbs. I was dealing with diabetes, with high blood pressure, with all sorts of chronic illnesses. Even walking a city block left me out of breath. Life, put simply, sucked.
I had been recommended for weight loss surgery while living in the U.S., but it would have cost nearly $30,000. And my laundry list of ailments meant I would have never found health coverage on the private markets before the Affordable Care Act came into force.
In the interim, I moved to Canada, where even though I waited a while, I did end up having the surgery at a hospital in Montreal.
The cost? US$60. And that's because I wanted a private room.
Since my surgery, I've lost almost 110 lbs. I can run and walk without pain. Climbing stairs is no longer an impossible task. My ailments have mostly resolved themselves. I have a new lease on life. And all this without having to seek bankruptcy.
Universal healthcare has restored my hope for a future. The time has come to ensure that all Americans are able to access the healthcare they need, without having to leave the United States. Full stop.