A Studio City resident, , was one of the people offering federal and state testimony about her experience about insurance companies denying coverage to people with pre-existing conditions. She has lupus and glaucoma. She could never buy health insurance on the individual market because of her pre-existing conditions.
"I had to pay for medicines myself," Cunningham said. "Doctor visits myself. It just became impossible."
President Barack Obama's federal healthcare reform act helped her because she was able to pay for coverage as part of a new high risk pool for sick people like her. But the program is only temporary until the Affordable Care Act is fully implemented in 2014 when roughly 250,000 Californians who don't have employer-based insurance have to go buy it.
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Here is some background material for readers who want to dive into the details:
- You can find the full text of the law at Healthcare.gov.
- The Washington Post offers some interesting graphics that show several parts of the law have been very popular, though the law as a whole has struggled to get support from a majority of Americans.
- The New York Times has broken down the number of uninsured people in America based on whether the law is upheld.