Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Georgia State AFL-CIO Endorses H.R. 676,Universal Health Care Bill

The Georgia AFL-CIO is the 26th state AFL-CIO federation to endorse HR 676, single-payer health care legislation introduced by Congressman John Conyers (D-Mich).

The Georgia AFL-CIO represents more than 100,000 in over 350 affiliated local unions.

The resolution passed Oct. 17th at the convention held in Augusta celebrating the 125th Anniversary of the Georgia AFL and the 50th Anniversary of the merged Georgia AFL-CIO.

When the resolution passed, Charlie F. Key, Financial Secretary-Treasurer of the state federation, said, “How can anyone in good conscience not know that healthcare is a basic necessity of life and is enshrined in those three tenets of the Declaration of Independence ‘life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness’. We currently see the results of having too many uninsured. Grady Hospital in Atlanta and Memorial Hospital in Savannah are facing serious budget shortfalls because the number of uninsured patients is increasing rapidly.”

H.R. 676 would institute a single payer health care system in the U.S. by expanding a greatly improved Medicare system to every resident. HR 676 would cover every person in the U. S. for all necessary medical care including prescription drugs, hospital, surgical, outpatient services, primary and preventive care, emergency services, dental, mental health, home health, physical therapy, rehabilitation (including for substance abuse), vision care, chiropractic and long term care. HR 676 ends deductibles and co-payments. H.R. 676 would save billions annually by eliminating the high overhead and profits of the private health insurance industry and HMOs.

HR 676 currently has 86 co-sponsors in addition to Conyers. It has been endorsed by 336 union organizations in 48 states including 93 Central Labor Councils and Area Labor Federations and 26 state AFL-CIOs.

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