As the U.S. Senate considers the future of health care in the United States, we need Sen. Susan Collins to prioritize the needs of patients with asthma in Maine and fight to keep – not cut – Medicaid. People with asthma simply cannot risk going without health insurance.

Medicaid is a crucial source of coverage for patients with serious and chronic health care needs, especially for children and adults with asthma. Nearly half of children with asthma are covered by Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program. Health care is a literally a matter of life and death for people with asthma.

The American Health Care Act would result in significant cuts to MaineCare (Maine’s Medicaid program). Unless Sen. Collins stands up to fight against cuts in Medicaid, Maine will lose much of its federal funding for Medicaid and patients will suffer.

Medicaid cuts mean more asthma attacks. The asthma patients I see in my office need daily medications and treatments, and they also need Sen. Collins to fight for their care.

Douglas Couper, M.D.