Gov. Hickenlooper hosts healthcare roundtable in Pueblo

PUEBLO, Colo. — Gov. John Hickenlooper hosted a roundtable Friday morning in Pueblo, talking healthcare and the differences between Obamacare and the proposed American Healthcare Act backed by President Donald Trump.

One of the attendees, Kristen Castor, has cerebral palsy. It’s a condition that leaves her unable to work full time.

“To insurance actuaries, it is a form of brain damage, and so the price for insurance is not reachable for me,” she said.

Castor said she works because of incentives that let her buy into Medicaid.

“If you take away Medicaid in the way the American Healthcare Act will, they’ll start putting people back in nursing homes,” she said.

Castor said if the American Healthcare Act passes, she and others with disabilities won’t get the care they need.

Trump’s proposed act would replace the Affordable Care Act. The proposal passed the House in May and is now in the hands of the Senate.

“I think the consequences would be dire throughout the state, but especially the hardship would be concentrated in rural parts of the state, like southern Colorado,” Hickenlooper said.

Castor is hoping the new plan won’t leave her searching for health insurance once again.

“I wish I could work full time, but disability takes a toll,” she said.

A recent Quinnipiac University poll found only 20 percent of voters nationwide approve of the American Healthcare Act.

The Senate has said they will rewrite the bill before taking a vote on it.

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