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RNs Praise Courageous Vote by Senate Committee on Badly Flawed Healthcare Bill
Date:1/28/2008

OAKLAND, Calif., Jan. 28 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee today offered praise to the Senate Health Committee for resisting enormous pressure to pass a badly flawed healthcare bill and pledged to work with legislators, community groups, and labor for genuine healthcare reform that avoids the serious shortcomings of AB1X.

In a statement following the vote, CNA/NNOC Executive Director Rose Ann DeMoro congratulated the committee "for its thorough, deliberative process and for taking a principled courageous stand despite the enormous pressure brought to bear by those who were pushing for hurried passage for a bad bill."

"AB1X was rejected not because Californians and the legislature like the status quo or do not yearn for fixing our broken healthcare system. The bill collapsed because it was fundamentally flawed on its merits on access, quality, and cost," DeMoro said.

Among CNA/NNOC's key concerns, said DeMoro, were the mandate forcing individuals to purchase insurance with no controls on costs or a minimum standard for benefits or quality, the failure to provide meaningful protection to families facing a huge spike in out-of-pocket costs, and the danger that the low employer mandate would encourage employers to drop current coverage.

Additionally, CNA/NNOC noted the serious underfunding of the proposal, including a tobacco tax and "the absurd premise of basing a health bill on essentially encouraging individuals to smoke."

DeMoro made note of several of the comments by committee members during discussion on the bill today, including committee chair Sen. Sheila Kuehl's comment that not voting for this bill "does not mean we prefer the status quo, any more than Gov. Schwarzenegger was saying he preferred the status quo when he vetoed SB 840," a single-payer, Medicare-for-all style bill.

She also praised the comments of Sen. Leland Yee who noted, "the only wa
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SOURCE California Nurses Association
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