ANA Joins Coalition in Rally for Patients' Rights
Washington, DC -- The American Nurses Association (ANA) today joined a coalition for patients' rights in a rally on the west side of the Capitol in support of strong patients rights legislation.
ANA President Mary Foley, MS, RN, spoke along with coalition members, senators and other health care and consumer leaders supporting the patients' rights legislation introduced by Senators John McCain (R-AZ), John Edwards (D-NC) and Edward Kennedy (D-MA). ANA believes every individual should have access to health care services along the full continuum of care and be an empowered partner in making health care decisions. The association has been very
active in pushing for strong, comprehensive and enforceable patient protection legislation.
"A true patients' bill of rights must provide for a strong, enforceable and independent appeals process, and health plans must be accountable for their decisions," Foley said. Foley also noted that nurses must be able to advocate for their patients health and safety without fear of retaliation.
Also parked outside the Capitol was an ambulance with a huge digital counter mounted on top that displayed the number of people who have experienced and are still suffering delays or denials in medical care since President Bush took office. By the end of the rally, the counter displayed over 7.5 million people.
"The heart of the nursing profession is patient advocacy," said Foley. "Today nurses stand firmly with their patients and say: No more delay, no more denial! Now is the time for making patients rights a reality."
Earlier Foley participated in another Capitol Hill event unveiling a television advertising campaign featuring the father of a sick child who experienced first-hand the frustrating and possibly life-threatening repercussions of denied health care. The father, Dylan Malone, also spoke at the coalition rally. The advertising campaign, which supports the McCain-Kennedy-Edwards bill, will begin airing on Friday, June 22, 2001.
Jun 30, '01
You are so right natalie! Sometimes things just have to run their course. However, this doesn't mean I am just sitting back and waiting for the crash. I remain very involved in legislative activities in healthcare. Right now many states are developing universal healthcare systems in preparation for the total collapse of managed care. These systems (mostly single-payer) will be well studied and thought out and ready to be implemented when the time is right.
Last edit by fiestynurse on Jun 30, '01
Jul 4, '01
Uwe Reinhardt, Princeton University, on the patients' rights
"I think it was a ridiculous diversion of political energy that
distracts from the truly shocking problems of the American health care
system -- the uninsured, the elderly without drugs ..."
July 6, 2001
The Patients Bill of Rights debate in Washington fails to address the day-to-day fears and concerns of patients. The bill would force them to go through an internal appeal, an external appeal, find and pay for an attorney and then spend more time waiting to be heard in our overcrowded court system.
They could literally die in the process.
Having the right to sue an HMO is an attempt to seek justice after the HMO has inflicted the harm. We have to prevent the harm.
Even if the Democrats win this battle, it would be the equivalent of applying a Band-Aid to treat a cancer, and will still perpetuate a
system that allows patient care to be at the mercy of an industry that has a built-in incentive to deny care. Every dollar of care an HMO can deny to a patient increases the HMO's bottom line. It's time we faced up to this obvious anti-patient structural defect.
Why not use the mechanism that has worked successfully for the patient for 35 years, while performing with a mere 2-percent cost ratio for administration? Extend Medicare to the non-seniors.
Editor's Note: The writer serves on the executive board of the Long Island Coalition for a National Health Plan
Last edit by fiestynurse on Jul 7, '01