Nurses Association commends the Rockland Legislature for unanimous support of New York Health Act

Fourth County Legislature to pass a resolution in support of universal health care at state level

What’s proven to be a minefield at the federal level is now being pushed in the New York statehouse.

Universal health care is on the agenda of many state lawmakers and Rockland County officials appear to be on board, unanimously passing a resolution in support of the New York Health Act. The New York Nurses Association issued a press release Wednesday commending the Rockland Legislature for their stance. County lawmakers in Sullivan, Tompkins and Westchester also have passed resolutions in support of the Health Act.

According to the New York Nurses Association: If passed, the New York Health Act (A. 4738 / S. 4840) would implement truly universal health care and eliminate financial barriers to care, while allowing people to go to the doctor and hospital of their choice. It would replace our current health care system that relies on private companies, Medicare and Medicaid with a single system covering all 20 million New Yorkers.

The State Assembly has already passed the bill three years in a row in 2015, 2016, and 2017. There are 31 cosponsors in the NYS Senate; one short of the 32 needed for a majority.

New York Nurses Association said the resolution effort was supported by the Campaign for New York Health, a statewide coalition of nurses, doctors, social workers, business owners, faith leaders, and concerned individuals committed to winning the right to health care in New York State.

“The New York Health Act is a blueprint for the reorganization of health care in New York state. The way care is delivered now is increasingly unsustainable – for individuals, families, businesses and government. We must act before the crisis worsens. A person should not avoid seeing their physician because they cannot afford the visit. When confronted with a critical illness a patient should be able to concentrate on how to overcome the disease and not whether treating the disease will force them into bankruptcy. I ask the state Legislature to move on this immediately,” Rockland County Legislator Lon M. Hofstein (R), Minority leader, said.

“I care for patients who are at their most vulnerable. Too many times I see patients having to fight insurance companies to get the care they absolutely need. Patients must literally fight for their lives at times. With the New York Health Act, medical decisions will be made between the doctor, nurse and patient – not a bureaucrat who has no clinical training and has never even set eyes on the patient,” said Chinyere Omwumelo, RN, member of the New York State Nurses Association and resident of Rockland County.

“This plan will not only reduce our company’s operating expenses dramatically, but will eliminate the unfair competitive advantage of large businesses over small business in premium pricing, eliminate the tremendous burden of uncertainty for management, and allow our employees to sleep better knowing their access to healthcare is safeguarded,” said Ben Goldstein, Ph.D. small business owner; president, End Point Corporation

“Pediatrics is the only preventative branch of medicine. We give lip service to the adage that children are our future. Our society cannot afford to keep upping insurance premiums, co-pays, and pharmacy costs beyond the reach of millions of New Yorkers,” said Harriet Hudson, MD, pediatrician.

“I am a psychotherapist practicing in Nyack. Many people call for mental health issues, including addiction, who cannot afford insurance or have minimal or no coverage for mental health. These people need our support and need treatment. That’s how communities remain healthy themselves,” said Alan Levin, Psychotherapist, private practice.

Article edited from a New York Nurses Association Press Release