In response to recent reporting about the Senate bill overhauling the Affordable Care Act, I would like to share my own experience and how the ACA has made our lives manageable.

My husband and I are your average hardworking Americans. We both have full-time jobs, but neither of our jobs provides health insurance of any type (he works in the restaurant industry and I work in school administration).

We have a fun, vibrant 8-year-old son. Our son has severe food allergies and acute asthma. Not having health insurance is not an option in our lives, as we are likely to visit the emergency room or urgent care for either or both of his conditions. Our son requires a daily (and expensive) inhaler medication, and we need to keep multiple EpiPens on hand in case of emergencies.

When the ACA was enacted, we began getting health care coverage through the marketplace. The tax incentives and lower premiums afford us not only quality insurance but also peace of mind and full access to the care our son needs.

I can only imagine what parents in similar situations are going through, and how we will all be affected by the Republicans’ proposed health care bill. The Republican plan to take Medicaid away from millions (many of whom would be children) is nothing less than draconian. I really hope that the Senate Republicans take all of this into consideration before backing a bill that would make life considerably harder for millions.

Joanna Frankel

Portland