From: Maranda Mulroney
My name is Maranda, and I want to share my story about why I support Bernie Sanders.
I am a 32 year old single mother and an RN Case Manager. I spend my days working within our broken health care system trying to get my patients the equipment, treatment, and follow up care that they need. I spend my evenings working with my son, who is on the Autism Spectrum, not only with homework, but also on social and behavioral skills. I love my roles in life. I am so lucky to have found a career I can help people and feel like I make a difference, as well as a wonderful child who has made leaps and bound over the last couple of years. These are only two reasons I support Bernie Sanders.
I was divorced early in my journey through nursing school. I spent my last two years working 12 hour shifts Friday, Saturday, and Sunday to support my family, going to school full time throughout the week, which included 16 hours of classes, 2-3 hours of nursing lab, and another 12 hours of clinical rotations every one to two weeks. I struggled to get by, but did it with the help of student loans. I picked nursing because I knew I would be able to make a good living for myself and my son. I wanted to always have job security. Currently, I am on my third year of deferring my student loan payments, because of the debt I have been unable to pay down from living on credit cards during my time in school. I make a better wage than most, and I still struggle to dig my way out of debt. I am currently looking for a weekend job in order to tackle this debt head on. My goal is to go back to school and become a nurse practitioner, and I will do that, but I am facing even more debt in doing so.
Working as a case manager I see the disparity in care in this country. I see every single day how broken the system is, particularly for the elderly. Medicare has its faults, but at least there are certain fail-safes in line to provide for those within this coverage. The real problem is insurance companies that offer medicare replacement programs and (I believe) prey on the elderly. These people who have chosen to participate in Medicare replacement programs are depending on nurse case managers and medical directors who have an obligation to a corporation to keep their bottom line down and their profits up.
I can give you a multitude of examples of people who I have had to fight tooth and nail to get even basic services covered under these plans. The same is true for many HMO and PPO plans. Most recently, I was the case manager for a gentleman, who had a stroke. Prior to having a stroke he had been laid off from his professional job. This was a functional member of society, he owns a home, is educated, and could easily re-enter the job force with the proper care. His physician and I had many phone calls with his insurance case manager and their medical director to advocate for him to go to an inpatient post acute brain injury program to help him over come his aphasia (loss of ability to understand or express speech, caused by brain damage.) The insurance denied this request and we had to send him home without the ability to communicate effectively on his own. He has no family in town, but his neighbors stepped up to help him, and luckily his memory and problem solving skills were in tact. Despite our efforts to get him the care he needed his insurance still acted like our discharge plan was not adequate and had called the home health company I set him up with saying that he was not safe. This was quite frankly not true, I would not send a person home if they were not safe to be there. Sadder still, the insurance company delayed approving the outpatient post acute brain injury program we referred him to for over a week, despite having the referral for a week prior to his discharge. He could have started this program Wednesday, but now he will not be able to continue intensive cognitive therapy until next week. This is the crisis we face in this country, and this is just one story in a pool of thousands upon thousands of people who are not being adequately cared for despite having insurance coverage.
These are my reasons for supporting Bernie Sanders. He stands for me as a woman, as a student, as a mother, as a nurse. First and foremost he wants to get big money out of politics, this leads to the big changes we need. I would gladly pay for my education, because it brings me fulfillment and security, but with the state of the economy it has been impossible for me to do so, but I truly believe that if you provide a real education for your people that leads to growth in your economy. A living and equal wage is a no brainer, how can you expect the people to live if they do not have a living wage? You can’t! Universal Health care for all is not only important, but it is necessary. We have people who can not take care of themselves or their family members when a medical crisis comes up. Furthermore, if people do not have adequate care after a medical crisis they may never be able to return to the workforce. This is unacceptable. For many years, the middle class has been shoved down and told we are not worthy of the things we need, the things we have a right to, but enough is enough. My vote goes to Bernie Sanders, for a greater America!