July 31, 2009
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WASHINGTON, DC –- The lack of comprehensive health care coverage is America’s albatross –it makes our businesses less competitive and our workers less healthy. We need to put partisan concerns aside and work NOW to ensure that the system is reformed. The cost of doing nothing is unthinkable.
American families are paying about $15,000 a year for health care, twice as much as we did twenty years ago, and we pay $6,500 more for health care than any other industrialized country in the world. Yet despite these high costs we have poorer health outcomes.
We need to address why we are overpaying for care that is not making us healthier. Health reform, as proposed in several current bills in Congress, will move us towards greater accountability, efficiency, accessibility, transparency, and quality. It is essential that everyone have access to affordable health care or the system will remain broken.
For consumers, health reform will translate into choice – with a greater number of options available, including keeping and supplementing your own insurance, at more affordable and competitive prices. Reform will also make it easier to compare and understand the true costs and benefits of plans. As consumers and employees, we can make choices what will help push for health insurance and benefits that are competitive, innovative, and cost-contained.
With unemployment nearing 10 percent, many Americans have lost their employer-based coverage. Further, of the nearly 50 million uninsured, close to 80 percent are working Americans. It is imperative that we not leave our most vulnerable citizens out in the cold, which is why health reform will only be effective if everyone is covered.
Experts project that families will pay $10,000 more annually on medical costs by 2016 if we DON’T fix the system Health care coverage for all Americans is a moral imperative that must not be allowed to fall victim to partisan politics.
About the National Consumers League
The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America's pioneer consumer organization. Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad. For more information, visit www.nclnet.org.