Monday, August 24, 2009

A Week of Action

If you are a daily news gatherer, you'd think that meaningful health care reform was doomed for failure and that no one supports the public health insurance option. Media outlets (tv, radio, paper, internet) seem more interested in the anti-reform movement, being funded by multi-billion dollar interest groups, than grassroots efforts of millions in support of the public option. And this obsession with negativity is only fueling the fire. In truth, here in NYC, advocates of the public health insurance option are out in full force. We are unified.

Over the last several days, I participated in several amazing events hosted by various organizations in the NYC metro area. My first event was a Thursday afternoon grand rounds at Bronx Lebanon Hospital. Dr. Bill Jordan, NPA NY, gave a lecture about physicians' role in health care advocacy. He engaged an audience of 50 plus medical students, residents, and faculty in cases discussion about green markets in NYC and NPA action in health care reform debate. Later that night, leaders of grassroots organization gathered at CIR/SEIU for a teach-in on the various legislative plans being considered and for a support-strategy meeting. On Friday, we held a press conference at Ryan Chelsea health center to let our congressional leaders and our President know that we support the public health insurance option. Community members/health activists shared their stories demonstrating the failure of our current health care system. Among them, Dr. Manisha Sharma's personal experience illustrated that even insured patients (premium paying members) are not immune from insurance companies' profit mongering (watch video here). And tonight, I joined a few members of NPA NY and NYC for Change at a Nine Inch Nails concert to rally support among young adults, who are commonly affected by the lack of affordable health insurance.

Though we are a group of local NY/NJ physicians, I know we don't stand alone. About a half million doctors nationwide support the public health insurance option. And we stand with our millions of patient - insured, under-insured, and uninsured - as we fight for a public health insurance option.

We are mobilizing, standing strong, and will make our voices heard.
Stand with us, show your support:
Unity Rally for Health Care, August 29th, 2pm

Karen Wang, MD
NPA NY Local Action Network

More photos, courtesy of Eva Brams

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