Throughout California – Health Access California, California Partnership and the Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment as part of Health Care for America Now (HCAN) – the nation’s largest health care campaign – released the following statement after Republican Scott Brown defeated Democrat Martha Coakley in Tuesday’s special election for the Senate seat in Massachusetts:
Patrick Romano, State Campaign Director, Health Care for America NOW-CA:
“The need for good, affordable health care for everyone in the nation – and particularly for Californians – is the same today as it was yesterday. People in California still need to know they will be protected from medical bankruptcy, won’t be denied coverage for pre-existing conditions, and can get good, affordable insurance either through their job or on their own.
Today Californians are more likely to be uninsured, face a higher cost-of-living, are at greater risk to be denied coverage for pre-existing conditions, and less likely to be offered on-the-job coverage. Health reform would particularly benefit Californians by providing new choices for the uninsured, more security for the underinsured, much needed stability for our safety net, and real savings for our state budget.
Health Care for America Now is committed to winning a guarantee of good, affordable health care we all can count on, and we will continue to push aggressively to get the best health care reform bill possible to the President’s desk for his signature as quickly as possible.
Tuesday’s vote was not a referendum on health care reform. It was a referendum on a particular candidate in a climate in which people, hard pressed by the economy, are impatient for change. It is a statement that reflects voters frustration with the lack of boldness displayed in actually making the changes we voted for last year. People are clearly angry and want more change, not less. Congress must keep going and finish health care reform right.
Our nation’s health care crisis is not an incremental problem and cannot be fixed with incremental solutions. In survey after survey, voters continue to voice strong support for forcing health insurers to stop excluding people with pre-existing conditions; a guarantee that everyone has access to good, affordable coverage; and requiring health plans to spend premiums on medical care, not profits. All those popular core elements of reform are tied together, and we cannot do one without the others.
Massachusetts is a model that health reform works, with 98% of people covered and insurers not allowed to deny people based on pre-existing conditions. It’s time for the rest of the country to have the same access to good, affordable care.
We are on track to pass a strong comprehensive bill, and we will stay focused on that until the President signs the health reform bill into law.”