Health Center Federal Policy, Uncategorized

Crossing the Finish Line on Heath Reform

By Dan Hawkins

With the Senate and House votes last week, we have reached what is perhaps the highest pinnacle in the 45-year long march of the health center movement, and one of the greatest public policy advances of the past century.  After a lifetime of hard work, we have finally achieved comprehensive national health care reform.

Every one of our tens of thousands of health center advocates, along with our leadership at NACHC and our dedicated team of staff, played a central role in this momentous accomplishment. I congratulate you all on this stellar achievement, and I thank you for your wisdom, your energy, and your unfailing commitment to our cause.

We could never have reached this point without the rock-solid vision of our Access for All America plan, the strategic thinking of our NACHC team, and the vigor and dedication of every health center advocate out in the field. Perhaps most importantly, the work of health centers nationwide day-in and day-out to provide high quality care to their communities helped to build the case that health centers should  indeed form the foundation of a reformed health system. And now, as we close this historic chapter in our lives and work, we open the next chapter: working to implement the new law.

I was honored this week to stand with the President, the Congressional Leadership, and distinguished members of the Administration as this bill became our new law. I reflected on the significance of this moment in our history – for health centers, their 20 million patients, and the millions more they will serve thanks to this victory. I reflected on what we helped to accomplish, along with so many others, for our health care system and the 32 million people who will soon have the security of coverage that they lack today.

My respect, appreciation, and admiration for each and every one of you in health centers movement is unparalleled.  Thank you.