Dean Gary Raskob (University of Oklahoma) testified before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) at a hearing entitled “Health Care Reform Legislative Options.” Dean Raskob began his testimony by noting “The culture of the health care system in the United States needs to be transformed from one that emphasizes treatment…to a different paradigm – in short, a culture of wellness.” In response to the current bill, Dean Raskob highlighted four over-arching elements that are key to creating a culture of wellness.
First, Dean Raskob acknowledged that the bill underscores the importance of the full spectrum of prevention, from community-based primary prevention to clinical preventive services. Second, the bill recognizes the importance of the community, the school and the workplace as critical locations for implementing prevention and wellness efforts. He expressed ASPH’s support of providing tax incentives to encourage employers to adopt workplace wellness and prevention programs that are evidence-based. Next, Dean Raskob highlighted the need for sustained and expanded public health research, especially in the areas of prevention and public health systems, including comparative effectiveness research. In closing, Dean Raskob emphasized the importance of addressing the broad public health workforce needs.
A full copy of the Dean Raskob’s testimony is available here. In addition to his testimony, Dean Raskob also submitted the ASPH Policy Brief titled “Creating a Culture of Wellness: Building Health Care Reform on Prevention and Public Health.”
The hearing included an extensive list of witnesses. Among those witnesses were Dr. Jeff Levi, executive director of Trust for America’s Health; Dr. Katherine Baicker, professor of health economics at the Harvard School of Public Health; Mr. Ron Williams, CEO of Aetna Inc.; Mr. Dennis Rivera, chair of Service Employees Internati onal Union; and Mr. Steve Burd, president and CEO of Safeway, Inc.
This comes from our friend Kent Greenawalt at Foot Levelers:
As you know, political action is based on money and power, and if we as chiropractors want to be considered for all the opportunities we hope for under the new administration, we must consolidate our message and develop methods of harnessing the massive impact of chiropractic patients voicing their support for inclusion and expansion of covered services in all national health care reform. The people clearly want it, but without a way to demonstrate the support, chiropractic may suffer the consequences.
One way to mobilize the political power of chiropractic is to compile an effective email list, with addresses of doctors and patients so any legislative efforts can be coordinated quickly and inexpensively. In order for this to work, doctors must be willing to collect email addresses of patients and concerned citizens and pool them to amplify the effect.
If each chiropractor provides 250 names, and we could get 4000 DCs to participate, that would be 1,000,000 emails letting the legislators know the viewpoint of chiropractors and their patients. Obviously, more addresses and more chiropractors would create an even greater outcome.
With the impending changes in national health care, it’s essential that chiropractors be willing to act on their patients’ behalf. Simply go to www.ChiroVoice.com or www.AdjustTheVote.com for information about how you and your patients can stand up and be counted for chiropractic. Patients can sign up directly on those websites, and will only be contacted for legislative reasons, with simple directions on how their voices as concerned chiropractic patients can be heard.
If you want to recruit patients to participate, here’s a simple idea for encouraging them to declare themselves as chiropractic supporters. After the visit, say something like this:
“(Patient’s name), one more thing before you go — our national associations are compiling a list of citizens who want to have their voices heard in regard to national health care. President Obama wants to make changes and we all know what happens when we don’t get involved. If you want to be sure that chiropractic patients are included and your rights protected, please give me your name, address and e-mail and my staff will take care of it for you. About once a month you may receive an update on what is going on with health care. If there is a time when you will need to get in touch with your legislator, you will receive an e-mail with a link to his or her website. Then you can send a personal message to request he or she votes to support your access to appropriate chiropractic care. We must send our message to Congress. This is really important for all chiropractic patients, so thanks for your help.”
Please step up for our beloved profession, and for the people you serve – it costs nothing, but it will surely pay.