Pastor Terrance ‘Big T’ Hughes has been a leader for social justice and civil rights in Denver for many years. He has fought to improve the quality of education for the low-income residence of Denver, to strengthen law enforcement and community relations, to ensure health care as a human right not a privilege, and to ensure every human is treated with dignity and fairness.
Recently Pastor Hughes was diagnosed with COVID-19 (Coronavirus). While fighting for his own recovery, he has renewed his call for universal health care in the below Facebook post. Let’s keep Pastor Hughes in our thoughts and prayers, and join him in this important fight for Health Care For All For Life. ~Dr. Robert L. Davis, MDiv, DMin, Board member, Colorado Foundation for Universal Health Care
My Denver Community,
I have been diagnosed with the Covid19 virus. Making this announcement was not easy. I wanted to both be honest with those who have come into contact with me and also keep family safe and protected. I have always promised to be transparent and made this decision in that spirit.
Earlier this week, I was hospitalized for pneumonia and I am doing a bit better each day. I was tested and diagnosed with COVID 19 because of this ongoing illness not because I suspected that I was exposed. Rachel has been tested as well but we do not yet have her results and she remains self-isolated.
For several days now, I have been restless in a quarantined hospital room and have had an opportunity to think and be grateful that I have healthcare and that I was able to be diagnosed and treated. While there is much being done, I can’t help but think this virus going to hit some neighborhoods and neighbors worse than others and the idea of health equity is going to be tested in the coming weeks.
How are we to ensure that the working poor who do not drive can access testing? Who is taking care of the children of those that must work to keep shelter for their families? How are we ensuring that the houseless population has access to needed testing and treatment when they rarely have phones or access to healthcare?
I am a veteran and healthcare is not equitable even in the VA system. I was hospitalized three times before I was tested for this virus. Rachel was tested and sent home, even though she had been by my side during my exposure and while I was showing symptoms. This is why universal health care is so important. There should be no barriers to health care when you are sick.
For those who were around me or my wife in the last week, please take extra care of yourselves and if you have symptoms, do not take it lightly. Continue to practice good hygiene and stay away from large crowds. Continue to love and keep our most vulnerable in your thoughts and prayers.
~Pastor Big T Hughes