LULAC Legislative Agenda on Healthcare
Universal health care is a priority for Latinos that includes affordable and accessible primary, preventive, and emergency room health care that is culturally competent. Latino mothers should have access to pre-natal care and children must have access to immunization, prescription medications, as well as substance abuse education. LULAC urges pharmaceutical companies and medical research facilities to increase the inclusion of Latinos in their clinical trials.
LULAC urges greater awareness among health care providers of the disparities in the health care system and the elimination of bias and stereotyping of Latino patients. LULAC also advocates patient education programs to increase patients’ knowledge about diseases disproportionately affecting Latinos, such as diabetes, Alzheimer’s and HIV/AIDS, and how to best find health care and participate in the treatment process. LULAC advocates growing awareness about proactive health care through programs impacting smoking and how to quit.
LULAC also urges an expansion of insurance coverage for children in poverty, as well as increased funding for programs to promote self-esteem and prevent teen pregnancy. Because of the disproportionate number of Hispanics who are uninsured and under-insured, LULAC strongly urges the creation of a universal health care coverage plan that insures all people in an equitable manner. LULAC also encourages Congress to take into account different trends and gaps in medical care expenses, such as prescription drug coverage, and pass legislation to improve access to care. LULAC supports the expansion of state and federal funding for mental health and mental disabilities programs.
Why the Need?
While 15 percent of Americans do not have health insurance, the number of uninsured Hispanics jumps up to a staggering 32 percent according to the US Census Bureau. Hispanics, and all Americans deserve access to quality, affordable healthcare for themselves and their families. No one should be forced to make a decision between providing food on the table or getting medical attention for themselves or their families. The reality however is that for millions of Hispanics across the nation these unconscionable decisions are placed before them because they cannot afford health insurance. Lack of a healthcare coverage disproportionately impacts low income and minority communities, and forces even greater burdens on them that are life altering. LULAC is determined to advocate on their behalf for healthcare reform that increases access to quality, affordable healthcare coverage and services for all Americans.
LULAC Statement of Principles for Healthcare Reform Legislation
Health reform is a priority for LULAC. As legislation goes through constant revision during the legislative process LULAC has articulated a list of principles which must be included in any reform package to celebrate LULAC’s support.
- It should include a public insurance option side-by-side with commercial insurance for those for whom private insurance is not the best option;
- It should recognize and support the right of each person who already has health insurance to continue to be insured under the same policy, and the right to keep their current health care professionals;
- It should seamlessly wrap-around Medicaid, Medicare, CHIP, VA and other existing public health care options;
- Recognizing the importance of shared responsibility, it should guarantee health insurance regardless of medical condition, and ensure affordability through a sliding scale based on ability to pay;
- It should incorporate the best practices for chronic care management and wellness programs, medical home models and accountable care organizations for a greater coordination of care for each patient, better outcomes, and to reduce health disparities;
- It should ensure a financially sustainable system by incorporating cost containment measures that effectively reduce costs while maintaining quality;
- It should provide for significant funding to the study and prevention of health disparities among minority and disadvantaged communities;
- It should include funding and support for community health centers which are the primary care facility for approximately 18 million patients;
What You Can Do to Effect Change
You can join LULAC and demand healthcare reform now by participating in the Following Activities:
- Contact your members of congress and demand healthcare reform now!
- Hold a Rally to support Healthcare reform in your community, or participate in the LULAC National Rally in Support of Healthcare reform by clicking on the link below
- Write a letter to the editor of your local paper in support of healthcare reform