This is historical material “frozen in time”. The website is no longer updated and links to external websites and some internal pages may not work.

Search form

Voices of Health Reform: Libbie and Natalie’s Story

This series, Voices of Health Reform, highlights how Americans are already benefiting from the health reform law, the Affordable Care Act. This story is about Libbie and her daughter Natalie from North Carolina.

Libbie Hough from North Carolina spent a lot of time worrying about her daughter, Natalie, who has a pre-existing condition.

Natalie had a previously undiagnosed condition, went into cardiac arrest while at school, beat the odds and survived. But Libbie knew that such an episode would be classified as a pre-existing condition and make it very difficult for Natalie to find quality, affordable health insurance. And she worried about what her daughter would do when she graduated from college and had to find insurance on her own.

She also knew that Natalie’s pre-existing condition might make it impossible for her to take a job or other opportunity if it didn’t come with health insurance. Libbie didn’t like that her daughter would feel constrained in her life choices, or have to worry about the cost of being covered when she should be able to focus on going to college, getting an education and pursuing her dreams.

Thankfully, the Affordable Care Act is helping people like Natalie across the country. Thanks to the new law, Natalie will be able to stay on her parent’s insurance plan until she turns 26. And when it comes time for her to look for health insurance on her own, insurance companies will be prohibited from discriminating against her because of her pre-existing condition.

The new law is giving young adults like Natalie the freedom to focus on priorities other than health insurance, and letting parents like Libbie breathe a sigh of relief.

Listen to her story:


Stephanie Cutter is Assistant to the President for Special Projects.