I am one of nearly 2.7 million New Yorkers (approximately 16 percent of the state’s population) under age 65 who does not have health insurance coverage. Since January 2012, I’ve relied on healthy eating habits, home remedies, rest, and prayer: “Lord, please don’t let me get hit by a car when I ride my bike today. Allow for safe travels. Amen.”
I come from a family full of Black women who work as nurses and in other health-care professions, so visiting the doctor has been a habit and priority my entire life. That is, until it no longer fit into my budget. After paying for rent, ever-increasing public transportation in New York City, student loans, food, and utilities, not to mention my debt payments and household needs, there is barely enough left over to save, let alone pay for health insurance out-of-pocket.