Dear [Decision Maker],
This year, over 3,000 Wyomingites will be diagnosed with cancer and many of those patients will require Medicaid coverage to survive their illness. Statistics show that cancer patients in active treatment are often unable to work or require modifications in their employment due to their cancer treatment. Notably, between 40 and 85 percent of cancer patients must stop working and are out of work anywhere from between 45 days to 6 months. Because of their treatments, many cancer survivors will continue to deal with chronic issues and these issues often negatively impact their ability to work.SF 144 will impose a hardship upon your constituents at a time when they are most vulnerable. A patient who is fatigued, nauseous, in pain, with a low immune system amongst other challenges will be faced with having to work or risk losing critical and life-saving health care coverage. While the bill does provide an exemption for cancer patients if certain criteria are met, the administrative requirements are simply not feasible for the majority of patients, many of whom will be too ill, too overwhelmed or too confused by the exemption process to be successful in retaining coverage. Forcing any patient to work while seriously ill is questionable but cancer patients face an extra burden in that their immune systems are particularly fragile due to treatment and the disease process itself. It only takes one sniffle or sneeze from a co-worker to bring down someone whose ability to ward off illness is severely compromised. Yet, the alternative of going without health insurance coverage and thus, access to life-saving treatment truly becomes a matter of life or death.
Thanks for your consideration,[Your Name] [Your Address] [City, State ZIP][Your Email]