Saturday, August 22, 2009

Democrats in Casper: Pres. Obama's health care reform will benefit all Wyomingites

Here's a press release about Friday's Casper news conference on health care reform hosted by the Wyoming Democratic Party. I was at a board meeting in Star Valley and missed the proceedings:

President Obama’s goals for health insurance reform will provide several benefits to the people of Wyoming, even those who already have health insurance, according to several speakers at a Wyoming Democratic Party press conference on Friday.

Leslie Petersen, Wyoming State Democratic Party Chairwoman; John Hastert, Wyoming State Senator; Lorraine Saulino-Klein, RN and Laramie resident; and Jeri Calabrese, retired teacher and Wilson resident, stressed the urgency and real need for reform in Wyoming.

“The status quo is unsustainable. Since 2000 alone average family premiums have increased by 100 percent in Wyoming,” said Chairwoman Petersen. “Health insurance reform will build on our current system to bring security and stability to the people who already have insurance and give access to quality affordable care to those who don’t,” Petersen stated.

Lorraine Saulino-Klein drew on her experience as a registered nurse in Laramie to advocate for health insurance reform. “88,000 people are uninsured in our state and that doesn’t include the people who are underinsured, which means that they carry some coverage that they can afford. Often those people neglect health issues because they don’t want to find anything wrong, because they will lose the little bit of security that the limited coverage affords them. In my 40 years of varied work I have seen many wonderful, hard working people fall through the cracks and come to ruin,” Saulino-Klein said.

Jeri Calabrese shared her story about the struggle to afford healthcare during retirement, “We paid our house off before we retired so we would be in good shape for retirement and yet health care costs have risen to the point that they are almost what our house payment was – and for less care.”

Senator Hastert reminded, “Reform isn’t only about the people who don’t have insurance though– it’s about anyone who’s ever been afraid of losing their coverage if they become sick, lose their job, or change their job. Health insurance reform will hold the insurance companies accountable.”

Hastert also encouraged everyone to remember President Obama’s health insurance guarantees. Under the President’s Health Insurance Guarantees, everyone will benefit, even people who currently have insurance, because any legislation he signs will include will reverse years of unfair insurance company practices. President Obama has laid out these eight guarantees for reform...

See my Aug. 18 post for the list of "eight guarantees."

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