• Piedmont Rising

Advocates Kick Off Statewide Town Hall Tour in Response to Recent Health Care Attacks

Updated: Mar 2, 2020

Community members share their health care concerns, urgently call attention to the fight to defend crucial protections under health care law.

Town Hall is the first in a series of meetings held statewide highlighting what is at stake for North Carolinians’ health care.

Asheville, N.C. — In response to recent attacks on North Carolinians’ health care, local advocates gathered in Asheville to share health care stories, discuss how repealing health care could impact North Carolinians, and issue a call to action in the fight to defend crucial protections enshrined in the Affordable Care Act.

The Asheville Health Care Town Hall kicks off a series of town hall meetings that Piedmont Rising will hold across North Carolina in the coming months.

More than 54,000 western North Carolinians could lose access to health care if the Affordable Care Act were repealed.

(January 23, 2020) -- Asheville residents worried about the future of health care wrote notes at the town hall for Piedmont Rising to deliver to Senators Thom Tillis and Richard Burr’s North Carolina offices on their behalves, as part of the ongoing “Message in a Bottle” campaign.

State Representative Susan Fisher shared a health policy update on the state level as she works to ensure that every North Carolinian has access to quality, affordable care.

(January 23, 2020) – State Representative Susan Fisher shared a state-level health policy update at Piedmont Rising’s first Health Care Town Hall in Asheville, N.C.

“We know that people are doing without health care. We know that there are people going to the emergency rooms for their health care. We know that hospitals have been closing, especially in rural areas,” said Rep. Susan Fisher. “One the biggest things that we’ve discovered that could really address that--and people in 37 other states have already discovered—is the expansion of Medicaid.”

Asheville residents shared personal health care stories of how they and their families have struggled to afford life-saving medical care and prescription drugs.

Asheville resident, Leslie Boyd, held her son's picture as she shared her story with attendees, “Before the Affordable Care Act my son, Mike, was denied medical insurance because a birth defect was considered a pre-existing condition.”

(January 23, 2020) – Asheville resident, Leslie Boyd, shared her health care story to raise awareness about access to health care in memory of her deceased son.

Boyd added, “We should be at war on this issue. People don’t deserve to die. My son didn’t deserve to die. It’s incomprehensible and it should be for our policymakers too.”

In total, over 4 million North Carolinians have a pre-existing condition.

“North Carolinians are struggling to afford the price of the medicine they need, on top of every day expenses like rent, child care, and groceries,” said Piedmont Rising Executive Director, Casey Wilkinson. “Stories like Leslie’s reinforce that nobody should ever have to decide between keeping their lights on and losing their life. We’re fighting for Leslie’s family and for every North Carolinian with a story like hers, because everyone deserves to get care they need.”

You can view WLOS 13 Asheville’s coverage of the event HERE

BACKGROUND: Snapshot: Health Care in Western North Carolina

PRESS CONTACT: Jessica Coscia,


About Piedmont Rising

Piedmont Rising is an issue advocacy organization built by and for North Carolinians to advocate for lower insurance premiums and prescription drug costs, and to ensure that more people have access to safe and affordable health care. Through grassroots organizing, education, and engagement, we are amplifying our health care stories and holding our elected officials accountable to the people, and issues, they were elected to represent.

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