Health Care Policy & You

 

By Rosana G. Ferraro |

Wait a minute! What happened to my health care?

You’re at the local drug store, picking up a couple of things (deodorant, toilet paper, you know how it goes) before you head to the pharmacy counter to pick up your child’s asthma inhaler and cash out.  Except the pharmacist rings up your child’s prescription and it’s $125.  “Wait a minute – I picked this up last month and my co-pay was $5!”

You get a letter in the mail, and while you’re watching TV after a long day, you open it – it says that your HUSKY health insurance coverage will be cut.  Wait a minute – how will you be able to get the insulin you need to control your diabetes – and how will you pay to see your doctor?

You’ve turned 65 (what a great birthday cookout your family planned for you!), and you know that it’s time to enroll in Medicare.  When you go to enroll, there’s a lot of choices.  Wait a minute – how to choose the right Medicare plan, do you need some sort of additional plan to cover your prescriptions and doctors?

You went to your cardiologist, and good news, your blood pressure is under control!  You paid your co-pay to the receptionist – but a few weeks later, you get a bill, saying you owe $65 facility fee.  Wait a minute – you’ve been seeing your cardiologist for years and never gotten a bill like this!

It’s payday and that’s always a good day – but for some reason you got paid less this week than last week.  You take a closer look at your pay stubs – and your company is taking more out for health insurance premiums.  Wait a minute – how come you have to pay more all of a sudden?

 

Who is making these decisions?

Every single one of these situations and circumstance is the result of health policy.

Health policy is the laws, regulations, and rules made by the state and federal government, health insurers, providers like doctors and hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, and employers that decide how health care, health insurance, and health work.

The decisions they make impact you, your family, your wallet, your health, and your life.  Their decisions impact your ability to get the care you need, when you need it, at a price you can afford.

Who is sitting at these decisionmaking tables?  More often than not, regular people don’t get to help make those decisions, or tell people making decisions how their choices will impact everyday people.

 

Your voice matters, and we’re here to lift it up

Here at the Foundation, we champion the voice of regular people in health policy.

We believe that people should have a say in making policies that impact them.  We make sure to tell you about opportunities to speak up, and speak up for regular people, too.  We tell you about bills in the legislature that would change your health care – for better or for worse – so that you have a chance to weigh in.  We organize rallies and events for you to come and show that health and health care matter to you.  We let you know about issues and explain them, sharing how it can impact you.

We collect and share stories about what Connecticut residents are struggling with when it comes to health and health care.  We learn about good policies that help people, and with you, advocate for change.  We work with other people, partners and organizations that are fighting for better care.  We believe health and health care are a human right – and won’t stop until everyone has the care they need at a price they can afford.