Right healthcare program already exists

Posted: Friday, November 24, 2006

Now that the elections are behind us, my hope is that both our old and newly elected members of Congress will get on with an agenda to achieve affordable and accessible healthcare. They have a good model already in place, America’s community health centers.

This program has a 40-year record of proven success reducing disease and keeping down healthcare costs. Because of this record, the program has unmatched bipartisan support and now serves nearly 16 million people in rural and urban medically underserved areas across the country, where medical providers are scarce.

I, along with many others, use the Cottonwood Health Center as my healthcare home right here in Soldotna. By having a regular source of care, I and others can lead healthy, productive lives and stay out of crowded hospital emergency rooms.

The new Congress has a chance to put politics aside and do something concrete to confront America’s growing healthcare crisis. Supporting health centers offers every member of Congress the chance to hit the ground running a join a bipartisan consensus around a proven solution in an otherwise contentious debate around healthcare. All they have to do is help pass legislation that will increase funding for the program so it can reach more people.

Let’s hope the new Congress doesn’t waste time in doing the right thing.

Diane Fielden

Soldotna



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