The Healthcare Debate and My BRCA

Nothing that I’ve seen or read so far about the healthcare debate has made any ties to BRCA or breast cancer, but I would be remiss if I didn’t bring the topic up as BRCA is a healthcare issue. I first have to say that I don’t have a strong opinion either way. I know I said before that universal healthcare is ideal, but I’m not sure how it would work or how we would pay for it. As someone who has a job with full health benefits, I don’t personally feel a NEED for universal healthcare, but that’s quite a selfish view and who knows in this economy when my situation will change? One thing BRCA does for me is make it really really necessary that I have health insurance. I mean… it’s necessary for everyone, but I’ll admit that I rode without it for a little while after I graduated, and if I didn’t have BRCA I would probably do it again if I needed to. But the BRCA makes that an impossible option.

Another thing I keep thinking about is these side arguments I hear people having over the “survival of the fittest” questions and why we as a nation are so unhealthy. I’ve always been a bit cruel in thinking that people who live dangerous/unhealthy lifestyles deserve the health problems that they get. You KNOW smoking is bad for you. You KNOW eating fast food for every meal will contribute to heart disease and diabetes. So why do it? But then I think of this argument and how it relates to BRCA and I think – if we lived in a society where everyone believed in “survival of the fittest”, would my bad genes make me unfit? Would I be written off and denied care because I’m likely to just die of breast cancer anyway? When I think about these things, “survival of the fittest” seems to blow up in my face.

I know that having a genetic condition and choosing to eat unhealthy foods are two different things, but what if the person deciding who was fit and who wasn’t didn’t realize that?

Anyway, I know this is all a bunch of rambling with no real thesis, but I wonder if other people have thoughts about how the healthcare issue relates to us as pre-vivors? Please share!

**EDIT: Ok after writing my entry I also found this entry on the Goodbye to Boobs blog. She makes a much more coherent point than I do, and provides a link to some Komen information on the topic. Kudos!


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