ADY BARKAN: Hello, America. My name is Ady Barkan, and I am speaking to you through this computer voice because I have been paralyzed by a mysterious illness called ALS. Like so many of you, I have experienced the ways our health care system is fundamentally broken. Enormous costs, denied claims, dehumanizing treatment when we are most in need.
Since my shocking diagnosis, I have traveled the country meeting countless patients like me, demanding more of our representatives and our democracy. Today, we are witnessing the tragic consequences of our failing health care system.
In the midst of a pandemic, nearly 100 million Americans do not have sufficient health insurance. And even good insurance does not cover essential needs like long-term care. Our loved ones are dying in unsafe nursing homes. Our nurses are overwhelmed and unprotected. And our essential workers are treated as dispensable.
We live in the richest country in history, and yet we do not guarantee this most basic human right. Everyone living in America should get the health care they need, regardless of their employment status or ability to pay.
Even during this terrible crisis, Donald Trump and Republican politicians are trying to take away millions of people's health insurance. With the existential threat of another four years of this president, we all have a profound obligation to act.