Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Action Alert: Tell President Obama: I Want a Strong Public Health Insurance Plan

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NOW Action Alert
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September 08, 2009
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Tell President Obama: I Want a Strong Public Health Insurance Plan
Call the White House TODAY at 202-456-1111 or send an email!
Tell President Obama that you want to have a strong public health insurance plan and that you are depending upon his unwavering support.
After taking action, please support our work!
President Will Talk About Health Care
President Obama plans to address Congress about health care Wednesday as members have returned to Washington to continue work on reform legislation. The August recess was a very difficult time for Obama and supporters of health care reform because opponents spent millions to raise a ruckus. We heard cries of socialism! Government take-over! There were dozens of raucous town hall meetings, organized by opponents of reform and generously funded by insurance companies. Multi-million dollar ad and mass mailing campaigns were launched, with outrageous lies about a health care plan with "death panels to kill off granny" and that "more women will die from breast cancer because care will be rationed."
Democrats May Be Retreating
Clearly, we've lost ground. Opposition by conservatives to any reform of our dysfunctional health care system has placed reform efforts in jeopardy. Chief among the fallout is single-payer health care -- the most efficient and affordable universal approach, which NOW supports. There is a chance that the House will pass a provision to allow individual states to decide whether to adopt a single-payer system. But our biggest concern right now is that the president and leading Democrats may be backing away from the second best alternative: a strong public plan. In order to make sure that everyone in this country has access to health insurance coverage and that out-of-control costs can be reduced, we need a strong public health insruance plan.
Take action NOW!
Universal, Affordable, Continuous Coverage, No Denials
A strong public health insurance plan would be government-administered, available to all -- allowing people to choose their own health care provider, have monthly premiums that are affordable, to always have insurance coverage whether they are employed or unemployed and to have all medically-necessary services paid for with no denials and no exclusions for so-called pre-existing health conditions. Doctors, clinics and hospitals would still be privately-owned. Doctors and patients would decide what kind of medical care would be delivered -- not the government. Health care providers would be reimbursed for services; no private insurance companies would be telling doctors which services they would or would not cover. Employers would find premiums more affordable, and small businesses would find that they can help provide health insurance without going broke. Nearly all industrialized nations have similar plans; no one is denied care and no one goes bankrupt because of medical expenses -- why shouldn't the U.S. have such a plan? Opinions polls have repeatedly shown that a majority wants the choice of a public plan.
Women Especially Would Benefit from a Public Plan
Women would benefit from a public plan because their lives are complicated, working part-time or intermittently because of caregiving needs. Because women are often dependent upon a partner's insurance, they may lose coverage when they divorce or become widowed. Additionally, many women work in the service sector where it is becoming increasing rare that health insurance is offered. In the individual insurance market, there is considerable gender discrimination where women are charged more than men -- even for less coverage. Pregnancy is often excluded. A public plan would be more affordable, provide continuous coverage and pay for all medically-necessary services. No denials for "pre-existing conditions" would be allowed.
Take action NOW!
No Public Plan Means More Will be Sick, Die and Go into Debt
A public plan is the only way that spiraling costs for drugs and medical services can be brought under control. Without a public plan, private health insurance companies will continue to increase costs, find loopholes to exclude people when they get sick and deny payment for expensive procedures. Our current system will continue to ration health care so that 20,000 people die annually because they can't afford insurance or medical care, and more than a million will declare personal bankruptcy because of medical debt -- as has been case for many years.
Make the call:
It's a no-brainer. We need a Public Health Insurance Plan and are depending upon President Obama to stay strong in supporting one. Please make your call or send an email message to the White House now.
  • Dial 202-456-1111
  • Tell the operator that you have a comment about health care reform, and you will be transferred to a White House staff member.
  • Give your name, and tell the staff member that you want President Obama to stand firm on the need for a PUBLIC HEALTH INSURANCE PLAN. Be clear and concise.
  • Say that you believe this is the only way affordable health insurance can be offered to anyone who needs it.
  • Add that women, in particular, would benefit from a public health insurance plan because they are not always employed full time, they sometimes lose coverage when they are divorced, and many cannot afford to purchase health insurance in the private market.
  • Thank the staff member for taking your comment and passing along the message.
  • If you are emailing, you can also enter comments about your own health care experience.


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Posted by: Jerin

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