Gabrielle Union wants us to take our country's health care debates seriously. The actress recently wrote an opinion piece for hellobeautiful.com about how women's health care is being manipulated by the candidates vying for the presidency this year and how a close friend passed away because she couldn't receive the treatment she needed to save her life.
"I am going to do something that most people in my position don’t do often — tell you my age. I am 39 years old. I am at an age where I realize that life isn’t always fair and that unlike fairy tales, life doesn’t always have a happy ending."
The actress then went on to share how her close friend was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer at 32, but lost her battle with the disease two years ago. Her friend, Kristen, was under a health care plan that wouldn't provide the treatment that she needed.
"Every year millions of women just like Kristen face choices between treatment and paying their bills. The costs associated with healthy living cause many to put off screenings and other preventive care let alone the treatments that may follow a cancer diagnosis."
Union applauds President Barack Obama's Affordable Care Act, saying Republican candidates want to take women's health backwards instead of allowing women to make their own decisions.
"Too many Americans don’t get the preventive health care they need to stay healthy because of cost. President Obama’s health insurance reform law expands access to important cancer prevention tools, saving and adding years to women’s lives, and eliminating difficult choices that women like Kristen face every year," Union writes. "In Kristen’s name, I am asking politicians to stop playing politics with our health. Kristen knew that women just like her are saved because of these screenings and prevention tools — it’s that simple. This isn’t about politics, it’s about saving lives and protecting women’s health."
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(Photo: Steve Granitz/WireImage)