Wednesday, July 14, 2010

TODAY: 3 Important Conference Call Opportunities for Health Care Advocates!

TODAY : 3 Important Conference Call Opportunities for Advocates!
First Lady Michelle Obama and Health & Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius today will announce next steps for helping women and families get the preventive health care we need to improve our health and reduce health care spending.  The official announcement is expected at 2:10 or 2:15 pm EDT  and will be broadcast at

Following the public announcement, the administration will hold two conference calls, one at 5 pm, for all advocates, and a newly announced call at 6 p.m. EDTspecifically for women's health advocates.You’re invited!

These are both good opportunities for women’s health advocates to demonstrate our support for this important provision of the law and to let our allies at HHS know how important it is for women that they eliminate the cost barriers that make it hard for some of us to get the preventive care we need – like comprehensive contraceptive care and screenings for intimate partner violence, as well as screenings for sexually transmitted infections and cervical cancer. The second call, scheduled for 6 p.m. EDT, is scheduled to be a conversation with women's health advocates. Speakers will include Surgeon General Regina Benjamin and Nancy-Ann DeParle of the Office on Health Reform. As the Wall Street Journal reported today, the initial list of of preventive services that will be exempted from co-pays and deductibles will NOT include contraception [CORRECTED]. A decision about birth control will be made later as the Administration issues separate guidance about the Women's Health Amendment to this portion of the health reform law. Today's calls are great opportunities to let the Administration know contraception is prevention and we expect it to be included!

Here are the details for both the White House calls:
WHAT: General Conference Call on preventive care in the Affordable Care Act
WHEN: TODAY: Wednesday, July 14, 2010 at 5:00pm ET
HOW: Call (800) 288-8968 and ask for the “Prevention Call” (be sure to dial in 5-10 minutes early)

WHAT:  Women and Prevention call on preventive care in the Affordable Care Act with Surgeon General Regina Benjamin and Nancy-Ann DeParle
WHEN:  TODAY: Wednesday, July 14, 2010 at 6:00pm ET
HOW:  Call (866) 233-3843 and ask for the “Prevention and Women Call”  (be sure to dial in 5-10 minutes early)

Please share this invitation with your networks! Note: this call is for background information only, and not intended for press.

Another Conference Call Reminder!
Health Reform and Health Equity

As we mentioned in yesterday’s newsletter, there is another call scheduled today to discuss how we can use health reform to work for health equity.

Givent that the new health reform law presents a number of opportunities to work for health equity and reduce health disparities based on race, ethnicity, gender, class, sexual orientation, disability and other factors, RWV is organizing a working group on health equity. This working group will be led by RWV co-founder Byllye Avery, founder of the National Black Women’s Health Project and RWV's Eesha Pandit at The MergerWatch Project of Community Catalyst. To participate in this working group, please email us at

In preparation for this work, RWV is urging our regional coordinators and supporters to listen to a Families USA conference call TODAY, July 14, at 2 p.m. Eastern/11 Pacific. Rea Pañares and Sherice Perry, Director and Program Manager of Minority Health at Families USA, will discuss how the new law creates a foundation for eliminating health disparities through investments in public health and prevention; coverage expansions, and provisions that specifically address disparities in health care. Click here to register for the call.

Raising Women's Voices is a national initiative 

working to make sure women's voices are heard 

in the Health Reform debate and their concerns are addressed by policymakers 

developing national and state health reform plans.

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