Momentum is building once again for comprehensive health reforms. After over a year of contentious debate and rigorous policy development, we are in the final stretch. Here’s what YOU can do THIS WEEK to ensure we cross the finish line…
- Sign the Health Reform Can’t Wait Petition—and pass it on. National groups such as the American Cancer Society Action Network, Community Catalyst, PICO, and Families USA have joined together to send Congress the message: “Move forward and pass health reform. It’s time to act.”
- Call Congressman Matheson & the rest of the delegation to deliver that message personally. Their phone numbers and emails are all posted here.
- Write a letter to the editor! Email us for talking points and newspapers’ contact info
- Let us know if you are interested in joining us for meetings with our delegations at their district offices.
The message in these final few weeks is clear:
- Congress needs to pass comprehensive health care reform now; the consequences of doing nothing are too dire;
- Time is running out to pass reform; the door is closing on this historic opportunity;
- Special interests cannot be allowed to get in the way of the bold reforms that Americans so badly need.
Did you miss our discussion about the bipartisan health reform summit? Check out this blog post to see our analysis of the event and links to video highlight clips.
We’ve also just released a great side-by-side comparison of the status quo vs. the President’s proposal (similar to the Senate’s proposal) vs. the House Republicans’ proposal.
Finally, a recent poll by the Kaiser Family Foundation, found that Americans are evenly split in their support for the overall package, 43% to 43%. However, support is significantly higher, a clean majority of Americans, for individual pieces of the proposal, for example reforming the way health insurance works, providing tax credits to small businesses, creating a health insurance exchange/marketplace, closing the Medicare doughnut hole, and expanding high risk insurance pools.
Thursday’s 6+ hour bipartisan federal health reform summit focused on discussing each party’s solutions for cost containment, insurance reform, expanding coverage, and reducing the federal deficit. A clear take-away message was how much consensus there really is in health reform–everything from stopping insurers from rescinding health plans to not having annual or lifetime benefit limits, and most fundamentally that as a nation we have to act and pass health reforms.
However, fundamental differences do exist. Especially around whether or not the goal is to pursue comprehensive vs incremental change, is expanding access or containing costs the top priority, and should government or markets set the standards.
However, almost each summit participant relayed a tragic story they had heard from one of their constituents—stories we hear every day in Utah from our families and neighbors. This fact alone underscores the need for Congress to pass comprehensive health care reform now; the consequences of nothing are too dire—for our families, for small businesses, for our economy, and for the fiscal soundness of our government. But time is running out to pass reform; we cannot let the door close on this historic opportunity
Thursday night, UHPP hosted a discussion around the summit. To watch the clips we showed at our event, click on the links to the video then jump to the time marks noted below
C-SPAN video of the 1st half of the event can be found here.
President Obama’s opening: 13:04 to 15:26
Senator Alexander’s opening: 20:34 to 26:00
Senator Coburn on containing cost: 59:19 to 64:25
Rep. Hoyer on containing costs: 71:02 to 75:04
President Obama on insurance reform: 125:12 to 126:09
Rep. Boustany on insurance reform: 126:51 to 133:13
C-SPAN video of the 2nd half of the event can be found here.
Senator Harkin on common areas & incrementalism: 10:19 to 12:49
Vice President Biden on Medicare: 46:00 to 29:25
President Obama’s closing: 179:21 to 197:20
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