Health Care Reform

This was in today’s online news, about a Cushie having to work two jobs to pay for her treatments.

Kim Yaman works two jobs to help pay for her mounting health care costs. Yaman has Cushing’s Disease, a rare tumor of the pituitary gland.

BY SARAH AVERY – Staff Writer

Galvanized by the difficulties a Cary woman has had paying medical bills despite two jobs and health insurance, a group of more than 60 community activists gathered in Raleigh on Saturday to raise support for a health care reform bill.

The group, all friends of Cary grandmother Kim Yaman, fanned out from downtown Raleigh to knock on doors and give out information about bills being considered in Washington.

A vote in the U.S. House of Representatives was on tap Saturday.

“I guess I’m a rallying point for why we need health care,” Yaman said.

Yaman, whose story was featured last month in The News & Observer as part of a series about health care reform, has Cushing’s Disease, a rare tumor of the pituitary gland. The illness causes weight gain, muscle weakness, high blood pressure and bone loss, among other problems.

For years, Yaman didn’t know what was causing her ill health, but frequent visits to doctors and myriad tests caused escalating medical bills. She took on a second job at the Galaxy Theater in Cary to augment her pay at the Wake County Public School System, but the expenses still mounted, despite insurance.

Last month, Yaman held a demonstration at Sen. Kay Hagan’s office to call for health reform that includes a public option. Yaman and friends handed out Moon Pies to passers-by, because they said they weren’t asking for the moon in seeking reform.

Saturday’s event drew community activists from Seattle, California, New York and Chicago – all who had worked with Yaman last year during the presidential campaigns and were eager to help a cause they hoped would help their friend. or 919-829-4882


How are you paying or the cost of testing, of surgery or meds? Personally, I don’t have the energy do much more than a part-time job.

5 Responses

  1. Comments from FaceBook at… :

    Unfortunately, she will now be on a waiting list for all her care. Govt medicine is NEVER a good idea, especially for those of us with chronic medical conditions. We'll be lucky if we receive ANY care now. Wish she had realized that before campaigning for socialized medicine.


    thank you for posting this Mary. Healthcare reform is pretty scary for us Cushies these days.


    I agree! I may be in debt for a long time to pay off co-pays, but at least I'm alive! We've had to fight so hard for treatment with the current system, I can't imagine what the fight would be like with the government deciding for us. We'd all be labeled fat and lazy and probably be fined for it.

  2. This is apparently a hot topic!

    More comments from FaceBook at… :

    If my husband loses his job (which could be soon), we will lose our insurance. And then, all the meds that keep me alive and working a job, I won't be able to take any longer. I may get very very sick as I have multiple medical issues. And then I won't be able to work. The Cobra insurance my husband would get is too expensive for us to afford. In any event, I would not be too happy being sick and unable to work. And then there's hubby without a job.
    Then what? If there is no reform or a public option, Fritz and I won't survive.. at all. Does anyone have any better ideas?

    Not all socialized care requires a waiting list. I used to live in Japan and there were no waiting lists. It works the same as the US. And it's socialized. And the Japanese are innovators, so they are as high tech over there as they are here… if not even better! I got excellent treatment for my medical problems in Japan. It's a private-public system. The same Obama wants to legislate. This way, people have a CHOICE! If ya'll are happy with your private plan, you can keep it. If my husband loses his job, we'll have to give up our own private plan and will need to go look to the public plans to help us.
    … Read More
    Most of the people worried about reform already have private plans that they are happy with. So, I don't reckon there's much to worry about for other Cushies.

    Just remember, no one is immune to losing their job. One must prepare as to what they're going to do thereafter. What will you do… with your pre-existing conditions? Makes you think, doesn't it?


    Definately a well thought out response. My only question about that is, if your husband lost his job, wouldn't you be able to go onto a state insurance plan as the system is now?

    I know when my husband was starting his business and we made very little money we went onto state medical insurance in CT very easily. I just worry about gov. run health care that might be run like medicare is.


    Yes, I can get a state insurance plan, but it will be worse care and more inconvenient compared to what Obama has in store if I am understanding things correctly. And still, between my husband's unemployment insurance and my living off the state, we're STILL grabbing from the pot of other people's tax dollars. Actually, whatever we would decide to do from that time on would be a pulling from the people's pot of money.

    Medicare is what all the elderly are fighting so hard to keep, so it can't be that bad. What's cool is that they can get a little private plan to compliment it.

    But any public option is always going to stink compared to any private plan any day of the week. Right now state insurance as it is…. I wouldn't be able to take most of the meds I'm taking now. I know this because even with my PPO private plan, we are always having to fight our insurance co's for approvals – even for lousy refills. Maybe I am wrong, but the public option the Dems are fighting for has got to be better than the program that exists now for the indigents. … Read More

    It's scary right now for all of us on both sides of this debate. I hope something works out that will be some sort of a compromise so that at least most people will be happy.


    The Govt REGULATIONS created HMOs, COBRA, inability to buy insurance across state lines, lack of competition, ineligibility for pre-existing conditions, and yes, even loss of insurance when not employed. You can thank the GOVT for all of that. They created the problems with healthcare insurance.

    De-Regulation of healthcare and insurance is the … Read Moreonly way to improve insurance options and patient care. Govt takeover of medicine DESTROYS medical care. There will be no competition, no advancement in treatment options, no advancement in medical technology, nor options for treatment. You can forget about a cure for anything, let alone cancer.

    I am sorry you believe that everyone else should have to pay for YOUR care (these are TAX dollars, the Govt has NO OTHER MONEY.) Taxes will be raised on EVERYONE and the middle class will suffer the greatest tax burden so those of you who choose not to pay for your own insurance or who cannot receive insurance due to GOVT REGULATIONS, will be covered. This is WRONG and COMPLETELY UNCONSTITUTIONAL and IMMORAL, not to mention, COMPLETELY UN-AMERICAN.

  3. More comments from FaceBook at… :

    If the government caused all this trouble to begin with, then isn't it a good thing that a NEW government is trying to fix those mistakes?

    Advancements in medicine happen fine in Japan and they are socialized in medicine. In some ways, they are more advanced then we are.

    Everyone has to pay for my care? What do you think is going to happen if your family or yourself gets sick and you lose your job. Right now, I am paying into the system: both my husband and I. Yes, we are paying for those who cannot. Yes, we are pay taxes! Are you surprised? So, please don't put words in my mouth making it seem I just want to lie back and make money off of hard working people… — just for the sake of it. That's not the case. Re-read what I wrote. … Read More

    Now that you know my family's personal situation, WHAT WOULD YOU do considering the circumstances should my husband lose his work? Please answer. Like I said, either way you roll the dice, we would still be utilizing tax dollars. Most of the US is run by state, local and federal public offices. You side says everything run by the government sucks. Is that true with every thing run by the government like the military etc. What about private companies… does this mean you think because it's private that they are immune to mistakes and corruption?

    Based ON TOPIC — what Mary wrote, what advice would you give to the woman's life who is in danger and she's working two jobs? Is she just lazy too just wanting you to pay for her health care?

    I'm sorry… I can't go on. You obviously didn't read all of what I have written here and I'm not going to repeat myself. If you did read it, you are misunderstanding me.

    This is not about Left or Right, it's about what the heck do we do if my husband loses his job. There are layoffs going on like crazy right now in his office. And I'm scared. Put the political talking points aside….


    And how in the world is Health Care Reform unconstitutional? Which amendment of the constitution is it breaking?

    Just curious.

  4. Thanks for posting this, Mary. I'm the woman in the article. It's disheartening to read some of the comments attacking me for supporting "socialized medicine." Obviously there are no perfect systems for health care, nor education, nor any other issue. I just want something better. Why attack me for that?

    Mary's question was, "How do you pay for your care?" I pay for my care by working two full-time jobs and also spending time from 2 to 4 a.m. making jewelry to sell or editing documents as a freelance editor. I've picked up viruses three times in the past two months and used three sick-leave days. Those are the only days I have not worked since August. I work seven days a week. It's not easy, but it's what I have to do. I'm exhausted, fatigued, and right now I'm sick with the flu … but I still work so I can afford my medications and my medical appointments.

  5. Kim, thanks for responding. I really don't think that they were attacking you. I think that they just saw an anonymous someone and used your story to tell their views on health care.

    I'm amazed that you can work that much – personally, my energy levels are too low to do nearly what you're doing.

    Best of luck with everything. I hope you can cut back on all that work soon and get rid of the flu!

    What you're going through is way too much for even a healthy person. For one with Cushing's, it's way more than you need.

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