Wednesday, October 14, 2009
MoveOn rally in Union Square
Several NPA-NY members were at today's rally in Union Square. Over 100 MoveOn rallies occurred throughout the nation today. The theme for New York was to thank Senator Schumer for his continued support of the inclusion of a public option in health care reform. Several physicians spoke, including our Manel Silva and Alex Blum from Doctors for America. Several MoveOn members spoke about the amount of money they have had to pay in order to stay insured, in some cases well over $10,000 per year.
Hearing the stories of individuals reminds us why we are fighting for a public option. It's not only for people who are uninsured, but also for those who are fighting to pay for their current coverage. It's for people who have pre-existing conditions that would preclude them from attaining affordable insurance.
The key operator in this is affordability. Without a public option, we have a mandate to buy coverage, and absolutely no mechanism to control the out-of-pocket costs for premiums. Without a public option, although the bills may contain useful protections for consumers, they fail to provide one of the most important protections: ensuring that care is not only available but also affordable.