An Open Letter to Congress

Recently the Fitchburg office of the Honorable John Olver came to the aid of my grieving mother who was facing mounting medical bills following the death of my father. The insurance companies sending those bills seemed to be engaging in predatory practices sending bills my parents hadn’t seen during my father’s four-year fight with cancer. Congressman Olver’s  intervention in the matter helped Mom greatly, lifting a unwelcome burden, allowing her to grieve for her husband and life partner of 46 years. I will be forever grateful that my family could turn to our elected representative for such a personal matter and be represented so well against those insurance companies.

Because my immediate family enjoys good health plans offered through our employers (or through MediCare), my parents were able to make a strong fight during Dad’s illness. It is my wish that all my fellow citizens have the same world-class care that gave our family hope. Even at the end of Dad’s days, we were comforted that his doctors were frank with us and engaged us in end-of-life planning. That planning found Dad a wonderful hospice home where he passed away with the comfort and care everyone deserves.

I write this open letter to you today to implore you and your colleagues in the House of Representatives to move quickly to enact the Senate health care bill before President Obama delivers the State of the Union address next week. Last night’s special election portends a very worrisome trend in the Senate where, until January 2011 or beyond, there might likely be an insurmountable roadblock to the people’s work. Because we so badly need reform—any reform in health care coverage for all my fellow citizens—I make this request of you.

By moving forward with health care reform today, Congress can move forward to repair our faltering economy tomorrow.


Keith Paul