During the run-up to the recent election I was pleased to see that Americans across the country expressed concern about health care reform, and often supported candidates who called for the overhaul of our outdated insurance system. In Maine alone, on Election Day, Maine AllCare gathered 15,000 signatures in support of universal health care, which means that the organization now has more than 40,000 supporters across the state.

This is heartening news for health care reform, but there is still more work to be done to effect change. It’s essential that all of us who advocate reform of the health care system let our senators, congressmen, and congresswomen know they must pass legislation that guarantees access to quality and affordable health care for all citizens.

There is impressive support from Maine legislators for national reform. U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree is one of the co-sponsors HR 676, which calls for expanded and improved Medicare for all. Soon-to-be U.S. Rep. Jared Golden has voiced support for the same bill. We should thank them for their efforts and support, and encourage them to keep working for reform. U.S. Sen. Angus King has supported cost-sharing subsidies in the Marketplace as well as reduced drug costs, but he hasn’t weighed in on more substantial reform. He needs to be urged to do so, as does U.S. Sen. Susan Collins.

Quality health care is foremost in the minds of Americans, and all our legislators must understand their obligation to enact substantial, fair reform — and soon. Lives depend upon it.

Jane Brox


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