Sending congratulations to Georgians for a Healthy Future for 10 years of consumer health advocacy.
Quality and affordable health care access is a basic human right – give Georgians a fighting chance…please.
I’m humbled to be their board chair.
Georgia is among 19 states that have not expanded Medicaid as outlined by the Affordable Care Act. Gov. Nathan Deal and his fellow Republicans who control the Legislature have rejected the move as too costly for the state. They have stood against expansion since the ACA was passed. A recent report by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation estimates that a full Medicaid expansion in Georgia would provide health insurance to 473,000 more residents in 2019 (rhe federal government covers up to 90 percent of the cost for states to expand income eligibility, which amounts to about $3 billion each year in federal dollars coming back to the state to pay for health care).
Although Georgia is has not expanded Medicaid, GHF has made significant strides on behalf of Georgia’s health care consumers.
They are celebrating 10 years, 10 wins:
- In 2008, Georgians for a Healthy Future is established as Georgia’s first advocacy organization focused soley on consumer health, health care, and coverage.
- As a result of Georgians for a Health Future’s leadership, Georgia’s General Assembly and Governor Deal passed a law in 2012 that restored health insurance coverage to Georgia children (HB 1166).
- Since 2012, Georgians for a Healthy Future has led the Cover Georgia coalition, an education and advocacy campaign boasting dozens of partners working to expand Medicaid in Georgia. The coalition’s efforts have kept Medicaid expansion as a relevant and pressing issue in public policy discussions.
- Georgians for a Healthy Future has helped lower Georgia’s uninsured rate from 18.5% in 2012 to 12.8% in 2016, by assisting consumers to enroll in and use their health insurance coverage.
- Georgian’s for a Healthy Future has testified or presented to legislative and study committees, national advisory groups, and state decision-making bodies on behalf of Georgia consumers on more than 100 occasions.
- As a result of advocacy by Georgian’s for a Healthy Future and a coalition of health advocates, the Georgia General Assembly and Governor Deal approved legislation in 2016 that required insurance companies to publish accurate, accessible, and updated provider directories for use by Georgia consumers.
- Georgians for a Healthy Future convened the Protect Our Care Georgia coalition in February 2017 and, along with similar coalitions across the country, defeated Congressional efforts to dismantle Medicaid and the Affordable Care Act.
- Thousands of Georgians are better equipped to navigate the health care system, use their coverage, and engage in public policy debates that will impact their health as a result of Georgians for a Healthy Future’s community outreach efforts.
- Georgians for a Healthy Future has published more than 20 research and policy analyses and hosted dozens of policy forums to inform the debates and decisions made by Georgia’s policy makers.
- Together with the Georgia Council on Substance Abuse, Georgians for a Healthy Future successfully advocated for a change to Georgia’s Medicaid program in 2017 that is expected to result in verbal substance use screenings for 145,000 Georgia youth annually, along with counseling sessions as needed.