Congress should look to model program.
Now that the elections are behind us, my hope is that all of our newly elected members of Congress will move on with an agenda to achieve access to affordable healthcare for all. Fortunately, we have a good model in place – our Federally Qualified Community Health Centers.This highly acclaimed FQHC program has a 40-year record of proven success in providing needed quality healthcare for our indigent populations and others in a cost-efficient manner. The FQHC program has unmatched bipartisan support and now serves nearly 16 million people across the country. Waimanalo Health Center provides a “medical home” to thousands of people right here in Ko’olaupoko. By being their regular source of care, we help our patients to lead healthy, productive lives and to stay out of overcrowded and expensive emergency rooms.Our new Congress has a chance to put politics aside and do something positive to meet the need for affordable and accessible healthcare.Supporting our community health centers offers Congress the chance to hit the ground running and join a bipartisan consensus around a proven solution in an otherwise contentious debate surrounding healthcare financing. All they have to do is help pass legislation that will increase funding for the FQHC program so it can reach more people.We have every confidence that our new Congress won’t waste time and will do the right thing for everyone. Healthcare is a right for all, not just a privilege for a few who can afford it. Mahalo nui loa and aloha!