By Kalea hall
Justine Ula is battling Ewing’s sarcoma bone cancer, but still enthusiastically explains how President Barack Obama mentioned her in a speech Tuesday.
“This whole thing has brought me many more good days,” Ula said.
The 23-year-old resident of Poland and her mother wrote an email to Obama around the time the government shutdown occurred, not expecting to receive any comment back.
After watching an advertisement about the negative effects of the Affordable Care Act, the mother and daughter decided to tell their story. Justine would not be able to afford her prescription medications or expensive chemotherapy treatments if the Affordable Care Act did not allow her to stay on her stepfather’s insurance until she is 26, she said.
“Without Obamacare, we would be paying out-of-pocket for medication,” Ula said.
Ula simply went on to the White House website and thanked Obama for pushing forward with the Act.
Weeks later Ula and her mother were contacted by the president’s speech writer.
“He thanked us for writing the letter,” Ula said.
Ula watched the speech live on the White House website when Obama said:
“At the young age of 23, Justine Ula is battling cancer for the second time. And the other day, her mom, Joann, emailed me from Cleveland University Hospital where Justine is undergoing treatment. She told me she stopped by the pharmacy to pick up Justine’s medicine. If Justine were uninsured, it would have cost her $4,500. But she is insured — because the Affordable Care Act has let her and 3 million other young people ... gain coverage by staying on their parents’ plan until they’re 26. And that means Justine’s mom — all she had to cover was the $25 co-pay.”
“I was in shock that the President of the United States said my name,” Ula said.
Ula will continue to have chemotherapy treatments at University Hospital in Cleveland for the cancer on the bone behind her ear.
“I have my bad days and my good days,” she said.
She wants nonsupporters of Obamacare to understand how the act can help people like her.
“Just stop seeing the political side of it, and see the personal side of it,” she said. “We are truthfully blessed for this.”