Historic Health Care Reform:
What We Have Won
As you know, we have worked tirelessly to pass state and national legislation ensuring that every American has quality affordable health care. ICAN's efforts were instrumental in winning an historic victory with passage of the Affordable Health Care Act. Despite the billions of dollars spent on a misinformation campaign based on fear and greed, this historic law passed the United States Congress and was signed into law by our President on March 23, 2010.
ICAN's Amy Logsdon on Passage of the Reform Law
Amy Logsdon, Political Director of the Iowa Citizen Action Network, in an interview with Channel 7 outside President Obama's appearance in Iowa City on March 25.
Although the bill isn't perfect, it's a great first step toward health security for all Americans. This victory will loosen the insurance industry's stranglehold on the American health care system. Its provisions include:
- Insurance companies can no longer deny care for pre-existing conditions, charge you more if you're sick, cap your benefits, sell you junk insurance, or raise rates with impunity.
- For the first time, Members of Congress will get their health insurance from the same system regular Americans do.
- Small business and working families will have security and stability knowing they can afford good health insurance that meets their needs.
- 32 million uninsured Americans will get affordable coverage, saving over 30,000 lives per year.
Some important elements we fought for did not make it into the final legislation. But in the coming years, there will be many opportunities to make the law stronger. As Sen. Tom Harkin told reporters, "Our work is far from done. This is just the beginning. What we're building is a starter home, not a mansion. And guess what? We have room for expansions and additions later on."
We know that many people are confused about what is in the bill. Not only was the legislation big in scope, but much of the deliberate campaign of misinformation from opponents of reform was targeted directly at our country's small-businesses and seniors.
A large percentage of ICAN's membership consists of seniors who are on Medicare and middle-income families struggling to keep up with family medical bills. We also operate a coalition of small business owners, the Main Street Alliance, that are fighting to keep health insurance for themselves and their employees, while still maintaining profitable businesses.
ICAN is working with our membership to get the truth out about the new Affordable Health Care Act. For more information on how the law will affect you and your family, we've posted fact sheets and reports under the Resources tab on our Heath Care for America Now Campaign page.
We will also be hosting workshops throughout the state to educate small business owners on the new law. If you are a small business owner and interested in finding out more about these workshops, please contact ICAN's Main Street Alliance Organizer Sue Dinsdale at 515-277-5077 or firstname.lastname@example.org.