Everyone is unhappy about health care, particularly health care costs, but not everyone realizes that a national health care reform bill is law, or what is in it. Research shows that many Americans don't even know that a reform bill has passed. Start by informing yourself about what is--and is not--in the bill, and then make it a point to talk to your friends and neighbors.
Some of what is included in the landmark Affordable Care Act:
o bans discrimination based on pre-existing conditions
o provides preventive care with no co-pays.
Yes, there are taxes--but only for those with incomes over $200,000-$250,000. These taxes will provide for the largest investment in the health care workforce ever made. There is a huge need for primary health care providers, and the Affordable Care Act will help fill the gap by investing in education and training, and providing incentives for these desperately needed caregivers.
Finally, for those who advocate repealing the act: this is an even more costly choice than enacting it! Repealing the act would cost an estimated $455 billion.
What about California? California is on the forefront of federal health care reform. This fall, the governor signed two bills creating the California Health Benefit Exchange. There are a number of challenges on the road to an operational exchange by 2014; the League will be active both in advocacy and community education. If you are interested in working on this issue, contact Helen Hutchison, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sign up for action alerts on the LWVC Web site. Go to lwvc.org and click on "Sign up for E-News" at the upper left. On the sign-up page, choose "Action Alerts."
Do you want to know more? Here are sites where you can find good information: