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NCOA Supports H.R. 3962, the Affordable Health Care for America Act
Date:11/6/2009

Statement by James P. Firman, President and CEO of the National Council on Aging:

WASHINGTON, Nov. 6 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The National Council on Aging urges the House to pass the Affordable Health Care for America Act (H.R. 3962), which we regard as a historic step toward the essential goal of accessible, quality health care for Americans of all ages.

After a carefully analysis, we have concluded that the bill is a good deal for America's seniors. H.R. 3962 would improve care for older Americans, protect and strengthen the Medicare program, significantly reduce the number of uninsured Americans, and make important delivery system reforms that should reduce costs and improve quality - all in a fiscally responsible manner.

We are particularly pleased that the proposal would offer an important new opportunity through the CLASS provision for people to receive more affordable long term care in homes and communities instead of in institutions. Other valuable provisions for seniors would reduce prescription drug costs, improve assistance for lower income Medicare beneficiaries, promote innovation in the fight against chronic disease, and focus attention and funding on prevention and wellness.

No legislation is ever perfect, and NCOA believes older adults deserve straight talk about the pros and the cons of this bill. While we recognize that there are significant Medicare savings in the proposal, we believe that these changes will improve Medicare's efficiency and fiscal solvency without harming the care seniors receive.

NCOA urges the House and Senate to work together to retain the best of this bill and further strengthen the final legislation by improving access to Medicaid home and community-based services and addressing the growing problem of elder abuse.

It is important that this process continues to move forward. H.R. 3962 would protect the interests of older adults while increasing the accessibility, fairness, and sustainability of a system that has too often underserved our nation's neediest citizens. For all these reasons, we say to members of Congress and to older adults alike, this legislation merits your support along with ours.

About NCOA

The National Council on Aging is a nonprofit service and advocacy organization headquartered in Washington, DC. NCOA is a national voice for older Americans--especially those who are vulnerable and disadvantaged--and the community organizations that serve them. It brings together nonprofit organizations, businesses, and government to develop creative solutions that improve the lives of all older adults. NCOA works with thousands of organizations across the country to help seniors find jobs and benefits, improve their health, live independently, and remain active in their communities. For more information, visit www.ncoa.org.

SOURCE National Council on the Aging, Inc.


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SOURCE National Council on the Aging, Inc.
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