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The Nation's Largest Nonprofit Healthcare System, Ascension Health, Praises Step Forward in Health Reform Debate

ST. LOUIS, Sept. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Ascension Health is encouraged by the release of the Senate Finance Committee's proposed health reform plan, America's Healthy Future Act of 2009.

"As a nation, we face an unprecedented opportunity to pass legislation that will vastly improve our fragmented healthcare system and it is encouraging to see policymakers furthering the discussion on this important issue," said Anthony Tersigni, President and CEO of Ascension Health. "While the House and Senate continue to debate the specifics, this effort by Sen. Baucus and the Finance Committee represents another significant step toward true health reform."

As the nation's largest nonprofit healthcare system, Ascension Health sees firsthand the human impact of millions of Americans who are either underinsured or uninsured. In fact, last year Ascension Health's hospitals and related facilities cared for one uninsured person approximately every 34 seconds, every day.

"At Ascension Health, we believe Americans deserve health reform now," said Tersigni. "Finally we have so many groups pushing for health reform -- industry, labor, business and now, with this proposal, we have an opportunity to continue the discussion in the Senate. Once the Finance Committee completes action on its bill, all of the congressional committees with jurisdiction on healthcare will have reported out bills. This brings us closer to passage of a bill than ever before. Now is the time for us to move forward, and we look forward to health reform becoming a reality. The citizens of our great country deserve nothing less."

About Ascension Health:

Ascension Health is transforming healthcare by providing the highest quality care to all, with special attention to those who are poor and vulnerable. Ascension Health, which provided $868 million in care of persons who are poor and community benefit last year, is the nation's largest nonprofit and largest Catholic health system. Our Mission-focused Health Ministries consist of 107,000 associates serving in 19 states and the District of Columbia.

SOURCE Ascension Health
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