President Donald Trump got right to work only hours after his inauguration. Just as he promised during his presidential campaign, Trump began the dismantling process of the Affordable Care Act, also called Obamacare,on his first day in office.
“It’s just insane,” sophomore Lauren Warner said about Trump signing his first executive order Jan 20.
The order authorizes a loose interpretation of the law to minimize any burden on insurers, healthcare providers and individuals, according to CNN. It also provides states with greater flexibility in their own health care laws.
The executive order will not eliminate the law immediately. For Warner, this does little to comfort her.
“It’s scary that we were born in a time that this law was implemented,” Warner said.
Warner has seen firsthand the benefits that the ACA offers to families that struggle to receive health insurance due to their income. Growing up, she rarely saw doctors or other health providers because her family simply could not afford it, she said.
“It had been a long time, like seven or eight years, I didn’t go to the doctor. I was a junior in high school. I didn’t go to the dentist until I was a senior,” Warner said. I didn’t have health insurance my whole life until the Affordable Care Act.”
With the ACA, Warner’s family was able to afford the necessary treatments for her mother, LeVonne, who shattered her ankle, and for her brother, who needed tonsil surgery. Without the coverage that the ACA provided, these expenses would have been too much for her family to afford.
Upon hearing about Trump’s executive order Warner said she was outraged.
“It disgusts me, to be honest. I’m angry because for millions of people, that’s all they have,” Warner said.
Although Warner is now covered by her stepmother’s plan, she fears for her mother, who also happens to be a Trump supporter, and brother. Both of whom continue to rely on the ACA.
“I don’t think my mom realizes the effect it will have on her. Something tragic could happen and she would be screwed,” said Warner.
Here on campus the topic of Trump’s executive order continues to follow Warner, inciting her worry rather than alleviating it.
“It’s easy to talk about the Affordable Care Act in this nice classroom, at a pricey private college, but right now there are people unhealthy in our country, and there is nothing that’s going to help them except the Affordable Care Act,” Warner said.
Warner believes Trump, rather than undoing the ACA, should fix the law. She believes this executive order is foreshadowing what is to come during the Trump presidency.
“Obama knew that Obamacare needed to be amended, that it would improve over time. The next four years are going to set everyone back,” Warner said. “It’s either gonna make a revolution or a regime.”