CALL YOUR SENATORS AND REPRESENTATIVE JANUARY 25 & 26 AND URGE THEM TO CONTINUE PUSHING FORWARD ON SECURING QUALITY HEALTH CARE FOR ALL AMERICANS
Now that both the House and the Senate have passed their versions of major health care reform, it is up to a bicameral and bipartisan “conference committee” to work out the differences between the House-passed bill and the Senate-passed legislation and producing a final version of the health care reform measure. This final version must then be passed by the House and Senate again and signed into law by the President.
It is during this crucial conference period that the NAACP has continued to advocate loudly and unwaveringly for inclusion in the final version of the bill of a public option, which was included in the House-passed version of the bill and which would increase competition among health care insurers, thereby lowering costs and increasing choice for more Americans among other issues. We have also been calling for the conference committee to act quickly, as each day that there is a delay means that too many Americans continue to suffer, and perhaps even die, needlessly due to a lack of adequate care.
Americans today are too often struggling and straining under the burden of three related trends: shrinking health care coverage, rising health care costs or no health care insurance at all. Over the last decade, millions of Americans have found themselves uninsured, and millions more have become underinsured as the value of their coverage has declined. In the years 2008 – 2010, it is estimated that approximately 6,000 people a day, or almost 7 million Americans total, will lose their health insurance. Today, more than 46 million Americans do not have any health care insurance at all. At the same time, health insurance premiums and out-of-pocket costs have risen steadily, and the number of families who are facing unmanageably high health care costs continues to grow. Furthermore, in the United States today the color of your skin, your ethnic background and where you live can not only influence your health care access and quality; they can determine them.
Thus the NAACP will also push for inclusion in the final legislation many of the important provisions that are in both the House and Senate bills, including a ban on insurance companies denying coverage for preexisting conditions; an expansion of dependent care so that older children can be covered under their parents’ policies; an increase in the number of children from low-and middle-income families who have health insurance; and making it illegal for insurance companies drop you if you become sick. Both bills also contain aggressive approaches to address the health care disparities that continue to plague so many racial and ethnic minority communities, which the NAACP strongly supports.
TO HELP DRIVE HOME OUR MESSAGE, THE NAACP IS PARTNERING WITH OTHER ORGANIZATIONS ON MONDAY, JANUARY 25, AND TUESDAY, JANUARY 26, 2010 IN SUPPORT OF A NATIONAL CALL-IN DAY FOR HEALTH CARE REFORM. ON MONDAY & TUESDAY, PEOPLE SHOULD CALL TOLL FREE 1-866-783-2462 AND URGE THEIR ELECTED SENATORS AND REPRESENTATIVES TO DELIVER A HEALTH CARE REFORM PACKAGE TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE THAT ENSURES COMPREHENSIVE ACCESS TO AFFORDABLE, QUALITY HEALTH CARE WITH EXPANDED OPTIONS TO HELP ADVANCE COMPETITION FOR ALL AMERICANS AND TO PASS IT NOW!