As a constituent from Hancock, I wish to thank Sen. Susan Collins for standing up for the residents of Maine, and the entire country, by having voted against the previous efforts to eliminate the Affordable Care Act and effectively gut Medicaid, along with plans to make Medicare much less affordable.

Now there’s another attempt, with the Graham-Cassidy bill. From the analyses I’ve read, it is even worse than the previous ones. I ask Sen. Collins to be sure to vote against this bill also.

Sen. John McCain said Friday that he’ll oppose it. I haven’t heard what Sen. Lisa Murkowski thinks of this bill. If she supports it, it may pass. I encourage Sen. Collins to use her political skills to also get Murkowski, and any other reasonable Republican, to oppose it. The health and financial well-being of millions of families are on their shoulders.

Let me assure you that I do not feel that the ACA is perfect. Much improvement is needed in our health care system, especially the financial and accessibility aspects, but effectively destroying it for all but the wealthy is not the way to go.

I’m writing this as a patient, parent, grandparent, community member, concerned citizen and physician. I’m taking advantage of these positions to speak for too many people who don’t realize what is happening or the implications. I will probably survive the passage of Graham-Cassidy, but most folks won’t. This is not presuming to know what others think – it is doing my job in all those roles as advocate. Doing otherwise would be dereliction of my duty.

It’s Sen. Collins’ job to also be an advocate. She should not be derelict in doing her duty.

Sam Bergman, M.D.

Hancock