Ann Romney, a New Public Face of MS

Craig Stoltz Health Guide
  • Ann Romney, wife of Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, has gone national with her battle against MS. On her wife-of-the-candidate website, and she offers significant detail about her story.


    Much of it will be familiar to anybody who has battled the disease or helped a friend or family member cope. An excerpt:


    When I was first diagnosed, it was probably the most difficult time for me. I was having difficulty with my physical balance, but I would soon realize I was having just as much difficulty with my emotional balance. I was overwhelmed and had so many questions. I had always been an independent person, strong and able. I saw the disease as an invading pac man - eating away at the myelin that was protecting my nerves. It was chewing me up, but I didn't know when or how it would spit me out.

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    Some details of her treatment are unusual:


    My personal treatment has consisted of both traditional and alternative practices such as equine therapy, reflexology and chiropractic treatment. Equine therapy has been particularly successful for me. The rhythm of a horse's gait closely assimilates a human's and moves the rider's body in a fashion that enhances muscle strength, balance and flexibility. The connection both physical and emotional among horse and human is powerful beyond explanation.


    On her site, Ann Romney talks about how she's been lucky to have excellent health insurance which has provided her with access to top-tier care.


    I have also been very fortunate to have had access to wonderful healthcare. Access to affordable and quality health care is crucial when facing a major medical problem, and I am very pleased that my husband is working hard to provide this for the American people, a priority that we both share.


    How does this square with her husband's stance on applying "conservative principles to health care," wherein market forces conspire to spread affordable health insurance to all, without federal intervention?


    In 2005, according to his website, he said the following:


    "We can't have as a nation 40 million people -- or, in my state, half a million -- saying, 'I don't have insurance, and if I get sick, I want someone else to pay."

    - Governor Romney, USA Today, July 5, 2005


    Of course, Ann has had someone else pay. Whether market forces will create insurance that covers equine therapy for all MS patients is a question Mr. Romney may want to ponder.

Published On: October 02, 2007