Edith Lynn Hornik-Beer: Help others, help ourselves | SteamboatToday.com

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Edith Lynn Hornik-Beer: Help others, help ourselves







We are all concerned about the Affordable Care Act. What will change? Will those who can't afford insurance be covered? What will be taken away?

U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton and U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner, I would like to know that you are aware of the importance of coverage for those who need treatment for mental health and addiction issues. According to statistics from Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration Services, there is not a state in our country completely free of mental health or substance-abuse problems. Closer to home, according to the 2012-2016 Community Health Improvement Plan, 27 Routt and Moffat counties, Routt County's suicide rate is among the highest in Colorado.

We are all born differently, with contrasting capabilities and stress levels. Many caring voters who manage well may think, "I am a good person. Of course, we have to help those who have mental health or addiction problems."

The truth is, when we help someone else, we are helping ourselves, as well. More to the point: Do you want a family member of yours driving on the same road as a substance abuser who wasn't able to get help? If you have a neighbor who may be difficult because he or she is mentally ill, wouldn't your life be easier if that person were able to get treatment? How important is to you that someone who has schizophrenia and perhaps lives in a family that owns guns is able to get the medicine he or she may need?

Rep. Tipton and Sen. Gardner, as an independent voter who looks at individual concerns, I would like to know that, when the Affordable Care Act is revised, as intended by this administration, you both will acknowledge the importance of providing health care for the mentally ill.

Edith Lynn Hornik-Beer

Steamboat Springs