Mother Whose Son Has Asthma from Delaware, Ohio, Joins American Lung Association on Capitol Hill
to Ask Senator Portman to Vote No on the Senate Healthcare Bill
COLUMBUS OH (06/27/2017) (readMedia)-- Hours before the Senate announced it would delay the vote on its healthcare bill, Ohio resident Brittany Sinzinger traveled to Washington, D.C., to ask Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) to protect healthcare for her son and the six million children in the U.S. who are living with asthma.
Sinzinger was part of a group of more than 60 patients from across the country who came to Capitol Hill to urge their Senators to oppose the Senate healthcare bill. Yesterday, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office announced that the Senate healthcare bill will result in 22 million Americans losing their healthcare by 2026.
When Brittany's 9-year-old son Matthew was two, he almost died from an asthma attack brought on by playing in the leaves in his back yard. As his parents rushed him to the hospital, his lips turned blue, and he was losing consciousness – he was dying in his mother's arms. He spent five days in ICU and miraculously survived but his road has not been an easy one. He is physically underdeveloped for his age due to the medications he has been on for nearly seven years and he has a weakened immune system that prevents his body from fighting off a simple cold or a 12-hour stomach virus – something that leads to frequent hospitalizations.
Matthew can't play outside on poor air quality days and must take his inhaler with him everywhere.
Brittany Sinzinger wants to make a difference for her son and the other families who are affected by asthma. That is why she first volunteered for the American Lung Association in Ohio and later joined the organization's staff.
Today, she shared her story with Senator Rob Portman (R-OH), whose vote is one of a handful critical to determining whether patients like her son will have healthcare protections moving forward.
"I know how important healthcare is for me and my family. That's why I asked Senator Portman to stand up for my son and other children in Ohio who are living with asthma," Sinzinger said. "Healthcare is critical for everyone and we need Senator Portman to vote no on the Senate's healthcare bill."
More than 32 million Americans are living with lung diseases such as asthma. For each of them, healthcare is essential to their continued health and well-being. The American Lung Association and its partners have called on Congress to only make changes to our healthcare system that will put patients first and improve the healthcare coverage Americans have come to depend on under current law.
"We rely heavily on quality and affordable health insurance. While we have decent insurance, we still pay thousands of dollars out of pocket each year, just to keep our son breathing" said Sinzinger. "I need Senator Portman to fight for my son and millions of other Americans and to protect our nation's healthcare system."
The Senate is expected to take up a slightly modified healthcare bill when it returns from its July 4th recess -- but it is unlikely to significantly improve patient protections or lead to quality and affordable healthcare for more Americans moving forward. The American Lung Association has urged the Senate to start from scratch and come up with a bill that puts patients ahead of politics and improves the healthcare coverage for Americans.
The Lung Association is deeply disappointed that the Senate bill has been drafted in secrecy and without input from patient and medical organizations.
Media interested in speaking with an expert about healthcare, should contact the American Lung Association at Media@Lung.org or 312-801-7628.
About the American Lung Association
The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease, through research, education and advocacy. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to improve the air we breathe; to reduce the burden of lung disease on individuals and their families; and to eliminate tobacco use and tobacco-related diseases. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Guide Seal, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.