Health Care Reform

January 2009

For the first time in our nation’s history, the United States Congress is on the verge of passing meaningful health care reform legislation. UNAC/UHCP supports this effort because our members work on the frontlines of health care, and have firsthand knowledge of the dysfunction in the current health care system. We see the effects caused by the delay of care; we see the effects on the parents who are forced to make a decision on their child’s care based on their finances because their insurance will not cover the needed treatment. Every health care professional in this country can give you an example of our broken system. We all have experiences that stay with us long after the patient encounter has ended.

UNAC/UHCP understands that the legislative solutions to improving our health care system are numerous and diverse, but determining the most effective options will require a well-reasoned, thoughtful approach and significant resources. In the pursuit of solutions, UNAC/UHCP is committed to the following principles:

  • High Quality Patient Care – People must receive evidence-based care and treatments, rather than basing health care on insurance reimbursement rates.
  • Equity in Health Care Access – Equity in health care access, treatment, research and resources must be addressed to eliminate racial and economic disparity in health care.
  • Public Health Insurance Plan Option – The purpose of a public health insurance plan is to pay for the health care needs of all people, rather than maximizing the profits of some shareholders.
  • No Taxation on Health Benefits – Taxing health benefits would place an undue burden on the insured employee for the value of the premium.
  • Health Care Workforce Development – As we expand access to care, we must prepare the workforce to provide that care.

The last meaningful dialogue on health care reform occurred fifteen years ago during the Clinton administration. If we miss this opportunity to expand coverage and promote health care for everyone, it may be another 15 years and millions more lives that are impacted by our inability to achieve a common goal. We cannot afford to let this opportunity slip away.