Throughout the year, our blog will feature AHA volunteer stories of survival and hope. We know there are thousands of stories like these - thats why we want to say “Thanks” to all of you for giving your time and sharing your lives with us. You can’t spell CURE without U! Thank you for all you do to build healthier lives free of cardiovascular disease and stroke. YOU’RE THE CURE!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Vote "YES" on Healthcare Reform

This is it. In a matter of days, the House of Representatives will vote to either pass health care reform, or carry on with the status quo of a broken health care system- and the vote is expected to be extremely close. 216 votes are needed in the House to pass the bill and grassroots advocates, like you, must take a stand for patients and speak up now!

Tell your Representative to vote "YES" on the final health care reform package.

For patients, the status quo would mean an estimated 20 million Americans becoming uninsured over the next decade, tens of thousands of Americans losing their lives because they can't afford the care they need, rising health care costs, and Medicare's trust fund drying up. Quite simply, failure to pass health care reform is not an option.

Guided by our core principles for reform, the American Heart Association has worked hard to ensure Congress understands the needs and concerns of the 81 million Americans living with heart disease and stroke, and the millions more at risk, and to support policies that address those needs. Although it is not perfect, the final health care legislation, makes significant improvements to our current health care system that we can build on for years to come, such as:
-Expanding health insurance coverage to an additional 32 million Americans, achieving coverage for 95 percent of all non-elderly Americans.
-Establishing important new consumer protections, such as ensuring patients with pre-existing medical conditions will no longer be denied or dropped from coverage.
-Eliminating lifetime and annual caps on essential medical services.
-Making coverage more affordable for millions of American families and small businesses by pooling them together to benefit from group rates and providing tax credits to help buy coverage.
-Promoting prevention by requiring private health plans and Medicare to provide coverage for preventive services with no cost-sharing, adding a new annual wellness visit to Medicare, and making significant new investments in community prevention efforts.

Health care reform is critical to reducing death and disability from cardiovascular disease and helping all Americans live healthier lives. So, at this truly historic moment, we must join together with other patient advocates and demand better than the status quo.

Send your email today to urge your Representative stand with patients by voting "YES".

Thank you for speaking up for progress!

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