Our Preexisting Conditions

by Liz Colville

Lovely: according to a new study conducted by the Department of Health & Human Services, and released on the eve of this evening’s House vote on the Republican bill to repeal Obama’s health care overhaul, between 19 and 50 percent of Americans under the age of 65–50 to 129 million people — have preexisting conditions, i.e. chinks in our armor, i.e. expensive problems that may eventually kill us. I’ve got two, so I’m allowed to be dire! They range “from life-threatening illnesses like cancer to chronic conditions like diabetes, asthma, or heart disease,” and under the President’s Affordable Care Act, all half or so of us would be “protected” from being overcharged, going on waiting lists, or “being charged significantly higher premiums.” The number of preexisting conditions a person has grows rather predictably as they age; 86 percent of older Americans (age 55 to 64) are believed to have preexisting conditions. Hey, you other 14 percent, how do you do it? And does it take you as long as it takes me to figure out what 100 minus 86 equals? [Via]

UPDATE! The Republican bill to repeal Obama’s overhaul has passed in the House.