Health care advocates for those with disabilities take bus trip - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Health care advocates for those with disabilities take bus trip to Washington D.C.

SOUTHWEST LOUISIANA (KPLC) -

Imagine the prospect of losing your independence because health care you depend on is no longer provided. Elderly people and people with disabilities fear that's a real possibility without changes to the proposed health care bill in Congress.

Several from our area boarded a bus with others to Washington D.C. to make others aware of the issues.

When Rocky Fuselier was 19 he was in a diving accident that changed his life forever.

"Broke my neck, it left me pretty much paralyzed from the shoulders down," explained Fuselier.

Now 54 years old, he must have help for daily needs.

"I can't dress myself, I can't bathe myself, things like that. Clean up around in my room or whatever. Basic skills that people take for granted. Without that I would probably be in an institution," he said.

Fuselier is one of three from the Southwest Louisiana Independence Center, called SLIC, who rode a bus 25 hours to Washington, D.C. to confront Congress about the needs of people with disabilities.

"They're saying the way the bill is now, it would cut Medicaid services for people with disabilities," he said.

They joined others, some of whom depend on Medicaid, to voice concerns about the Senate health care bill and whether it will cut desperately needed funding - funding that is the lifeblood of SLIC and people served there, who struggle to stay independent.

"People don't never want to go into any type of institution," he said.

Gwynn Houston with SLIC says though they were not able to meet directly with Louisiana's senators, they met with the senators'  representatives and went to the National Republican Committee Office. She feels the trip was a success.

"We wanted to let these folks know that if the bill passes, that is pending right now, if it passes in its entirety without any changes or alterations, then within a few years, the people we serve, many of them will have to be institutionalized, go into group homes," she said.

They ask people to make elected leaders aware of the concerns and needs of the frail and the chronically ill, and they urge people to remember this:

"If you don't have a disability now, just wait a few years from now and you'll have one. Because as we grow older we will become disabled in many ways," said Houston. 

The group received national coverage during the bus tour from CNN and Time.

For a digest of the most recent version of the Senate bill, click HERE.

Copyright 2017 KPLC. All rights reserved.

  • More Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • Bonds awarded to Calcasieu and Vernon for improvement projects

    Bonds awarded to Calcasieu and Vernon for improvement projects

    Friday, August 18 2017 6:12 PM EDT2017-08-18 22:12:21 GMT
    (Source: State of Louisiana)(Source: State of Louisiana)

    The State Bond Commission has awarded Calcasieu and Vernon parishes millions of dollars for public improvement projects, State Treasurer Ron Henson announced Friday. The commission approved $290.7 million for projects statewide during its August meeting, according to Henson's office.

    More >>

    The State Bond Commission has awarded Calcasieu and Vernon parishes millions of dollars for public improvement projects, State Treasurer Ron Henson announced Friday. The commission approved $290.7 million for projects statewide during its August meeting, according to Henson's office.

    More >>
  • SOLAR ECLIPSE: Do's and Dont's

    SOLAR ECLIPSE: Do's and Dont's

    Friday, August 18 2017 6:03 PM EDT2017-08-18 22:03:19 GMT
    (Source: Wikipedia)(Source: Wikipedia)

    The Solar Eclipse that's been flooding your timelines, news feeds, and literally, almost every conversation you hear is less than a week away. If you plan on watching this natural phenomenon here is a list of some do's and don'ts for the 2017 Solar Eclipse provided by NASA: Do's: ALWAYS use your solar filters or "Eclipse Glasses" for viewing a partially eclipsed sun. Check your eclipse glasses for damage. (i.e. Scratches, holes, rips, tears, etc.) Keep an eye...

    More >>

    The Solar Eclipse that's been flooding your timelines, news feeds, and literally, almost every conversation you hear is less than a week away. If you plan on watching this natural phenomenon here is a list of some do's and don'ts for the 2017 Solar Eclipse provided by NASA: Do's: ALWAYS use your solar filters or "Eclipse Glasses" for viewing a partially eclipsed sun. Check your eclipse glasses for damage. (i.e. Scratches, holes, rips, tears, etc.) Keep an eye...

    More >>
  • How does the weather impact your mood?

    How does the weather impact your mood?

    Friday, August 18 2017 5:49 PM EDT2017-08-18 21:49:37 GMT
    (Source: Candy Rodriguez/KPLC)(Source: Candy Rodriguez/KPLC)

    Melissa Gregory spends her sunny days outdoors feeding ducks near the Lake Charles Veterans Memorial Park. "It's perfect conditions," said Gregory about the sunny day because it helps her relax and get rid of stress, but lately with all the rain she's been feeling stressed. "I feel kind of cooped up and I feel like I can't go outside, and I have to hide under the roof or stay in the house or hide under the umbrella," she said. 

    More >>

    Melissa Gregory spends her sunny days outdoors feeding ducks near the Lake Charles Veterans Memorial Park. "It's perfect conditions," said Gregory about the sunny day because it helps her relax and get rid of stress, but lately with all the rain she's been feeling stressed. "I feel kind of cooped up and I feel like I can't go outside, and I have to hide under the roof or stay in the house or hide under the umbrella," she said. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly