Crowd petitions U.S. Rep. Doug LaMalfa on health care at his Auburn office | TheUnion.com

Crowd petitions U.S. Rep. Doug LaMalfa on health care at his Auburn office

Carolyn Maginot faced medical bills exceeding $2,000 a month before the Affordable Care Act, she said.

Since its passage, the health care act has reduced her monthly bills to a fraction of what she once paid. It enabled her to receive a $7,000 insulin pump.

"If it is repealed, what is going to happen to people like me?" Maginot asked.

Maginot, of Grass Valley, was one of six people who spoke Thursday with U.S. Rep. Doug LaMalfa's staff at his Auburn office. About 30 others stood outside during the meeting, holding signs and at one point marching down Rickenbacker Way.

It was the second time within weeks that a group gathered at the congressman's office. A push for better health care has led them to petition LaMalfa, who wasn't present on Thursday.

Christine Newsom, a retired Grass Valley doctor, also spoke with the congressman's staff. She described former patients who would decline tests and medicine because they lacked insurance.

"As a result, I saw negative consequences, delayed diagnoses," she said.

Newsom and several others who visited LaMalfa's office support a single-payer health care system.

LaMalfa, a Republican whose congressional district includes most of Nevada County, supported President Donald Trump during the campaign. He's previously called for the repeal of the Affordable Care Act, called Obamacare.

Mindy Oberne, also included in the meeting, said she told LaMalfa's staff that GOP leaders have called for changes in health care — such as a stronger system — that, when examined, match aspects of a single-payer system.

"All these ideas are good, because they're talking about a single-payer system, whether they like it or not," Oberne said.

Local health care advocates also have asked for a town hall meeting with LaMalfa.

"He currently does not have a town hall scheduled, but I am sure there will be some in the coming months," said Parker Williams, LaMalfa's communications director, in an email.

To contact Staff Writer Alan Riquelmy, email ariquelmy@theunion.com or call 530-477-4239.