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Voices of Reform

An astoundingly broad coalition comes out in support of health reform.

There’s no issue that touches people more directly than health care, so there’s good reason for people to want as much reassurance as they can get before the country goes ahead with reform.  That’s why those who work in our health care system day in and day out have a unique role in weighing in on the merits of any reform effort.   In that field, one could hardly find a better voice than Marla J. Weston, PhD, RN, head of the American Nurses Association, who spoke out today loudly and clearly: “If ever there was a time to trust a nurse—that time is now. Please trust me when I tell you that we can’t afford to put off reform for one more administration—one more political season—or even one more day… This legislation will enact very real and much-needed insurance reforms; it will place a new focus on wellness and prevention, improving access to primary care and expanding coverage to over 30 million people.”

It would only make sense that Americans listen to groups dedicated to advocating for the sick and disabled, for our kids and our nation’s seniors, and for the American consumer.  And for women, communities of color, and people of faith, it is more than understandable that they would want to hear from groups that have studied the proposals closely to see how it impacts them and their communities.  Organizations representing 59,000 Catholic nuns, for example, joined together today to passionately urge Congress to act:  “In this Lenten time, we have launched nationwide prayer vigils for health care reform. We are praying for those who currently lack health care. We are praying for the nearly 45,000 who will lose their lives this year if Congress fails to act. We are also praying for you and your fellow Members of Congress as you complete your work in the coming days. For us, this health care reform is a faith mandate for life and dignity of all of our people.”

Small businesses, fighting through a still-tough economy, also rightly want to know what this would mean for them, and the Small Business Majority makes the case on the benefits, adding that “Two-thirds or more of small business owners we polled in 17 states agree that healthcare reform is needed now to get the US economy back on track.”

But those groups are just the tip of the iceberg -- in an unprecedented show of diverse, even sweeping support, a virtual army of organizations came out in support of the President’s health reform proposal this morning as Congress prepares to make its final decisions.  The astounding list of 244 organizations provided Families USA, which led the way in coordinating the coalition, is below:

Physicians' and nurses' organizations
American Academy of Family Physicians
American Academy of Pediatrics
American Academy of Physician Assistants
American College of Nurse Midwives
American College of Physicians
American Nurses Association
American Psychiatric Nurses Association
Doctors for America
National Medical Association
National Physicians Alliance
Nurse-Family Partnership National Service Office
Physicians for Reproductive Choice and Health
Ryan White Medical Providers Coalition

Consumer organizations: 
American Library Association
Americans for Democratic Action
Association of Assistive Technology Act Programs
Center for Adolescent Health & the Law
Center for Rural Affairs
Center for the Study of the American Electorate
CenterLink: The Community of LGBT Centers
Change That Works
Coalition on Human Needs
Common Cause
CommonHealth ACTION
Community Action Partnership
Community Catalyst
Community Transportation Association of America
Consumer Action
Consumer Federation of America
Consumers' CHECKBOOK/Center for the Study of Services
Consumers Union
Corporation for Supportive Housing
Families USA
Family Equality Council
Health Care For All
Health Care for America Now
National Association of Human Rights Workers
National Association of Neighborhoods
National Center on Caregiving, Family Caregiver Alliance
National Coalition for LGBT Health
National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs
National Coalition on Health Care Action Fund
National Consumers League
National Family Caregivers Association
National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
National Health Law Program
National Legal Aid and Defender Association
National Patient Advocate Foundation
National Policy and Advocacy Council on Homelessness
National Public Sector HealthCare Roundtable
National Respite Coalition
Opinion Leaders Advocacy Network
Partnership for Prevention
Prescription Policy Choices
Progressive States Network
Project Inform
Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law
Small Business Majority
SparkLight Communications
State Legislators for Health Care Reform
Summit Health Institute for Research and Education, Inc.
The Center for Health Care Policy Research and Analysis
The Main Street Alliance
U.S. PIRG (Public Interest Research Group)
United Neighborhood Centers of America
Universal Health Care Action Network (UHCAN)

Groups representing communities of color
Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum
Asian American Justice Center
Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations
Association of Hispanic Healthcare Executives
Black Women's Health Imperative
Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
Healthcare Access Project
Hispanic Dental Association
Japanese American Citizens League
National Association of Hispanic Nurses
National Black Leadership Initiative on Cancer III, Community Networks Program
National Congress of American Indians
National Congress of Black Women, Inc.
National Council of Asian & Pacific Islander Physicians
National Council of Negro Women, Inc.
National Council of Urban Indian Health
National Forum for Latino Healthcare Executives
National Health Equity Coalition
National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators
National Hispanic Council on Aging
National Hispanic Medical Association
National Indian Health Board
National Native American AIDS Prevention Center
National Resource Center for Hispanic Mental Health
Out of Many, One
Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities Coalition
Self-Governance Communication and Education Tribal Consortium
The Access Project
The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights (LCCR)

Disease and disability organizations
AIDS Action Council
Alzheimer's Foundation of America
American Association for Cancer Research
American Association of People with Disabilities
American Association on Health and Disability
American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN)
American Diabetes Association
American Heart Association
American Network of Community Options and Resources
Anxiety Disorders Association of America
Association of University Centers on Disabilities
Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America
Autism Society of America
Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law
Brain Injury Association of America
Colon Cancer Alliance
Communities Advocating Emergency AIDS Relief Coalition
Defeat Diabetes Foundation
Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund
Easter Seals
Eating Disorders Coalition
Epilepsy Foundation
HIV Medicine Association
Malecare Prostate Cancer Support
Mental Health America
National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors
National Alliance on Mental Illness
National Association of County Behavioral Health and Developmental Disability Directors
National Association of Mental Health Planning and Advisory Councils
National Association of State Head Injury Administrators
National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors
National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship
National Coalition of Mental Health Consumer/Survivor Organizations
National Disability Rights Network
National Down Syndrome Congress
National Foundation for Mental Health
National Lung Cancer Partnership
National Multiple Sclerosis Society
National Spinal Cord Injury Association
Paralyzed Veterans of America
The AIDS Institute
The Arc of the United States
The LGBT Cancer Project - Out With Cancer
Tourette Syndrome Association
United Cerebral Palsy
United Spinal Association
Us TOO International Prostate Cancer Education & Support Network

Organizations representing hospitals and other health providers
American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging
American Counseling Association
American Group Psychotherapy Association
American Hospice Foundation
American Mental Health Counselors Association
American Music Therapy Association
American Psychological Association
American Public Health Association
American Social Health Association
Association for Ambulatory Behavioral Healthcare
Association for the Advancement of Psychology
Association of Community Affiliated Plans
Clinical Social Work Association
Federation of American Hospitals
National Academies of Practice
National Alliance for Caregiving
National Association of Community Health Centers
National Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems
National Association of Social Workers
National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare
PHI - Health Care for Health Care Workers
Therapeutic Communities of America

Labor organizations
American Federation of Government Employees
American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME)
American Federation of Television and Radio Artists
California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS)
International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America (UAW)
National Education Association
Service Employees International Union
United Food and Commercial Workers International Union

Religious organizations
American Association of Pastoral Counselors
American Friends Service Committee
Association for Clinical Pastoral Education
Association of Professional Chaplains
B'nai B'rith International
Catholic Health Association of the United States
Clergy Strategic Alliances, LLC
Disciples Justice Action Network
Eastern Diocese of the Armenian Church
Evangelicals for Social Action
Faithful America
Faithful Reform in Health Care
Friends Committee on National Legislation
Friends Fiduciary Corporation
Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility
Jewish Reconstructionist Federation
National Association of Jewish Chaplains
National Council of Churches, USA Health Task Force
NETWORK, A National Catholic Social Justice Lobby
Sisters of Mercy of the Americas Institute Justice Team
The Healing of the Nations Foundation
The Shomer Shalom Network for Jewish Nonviolence
Union for Reform Judaism
Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations
United Methodist Church - General Board of Church and Society
Witness Justice
Women of Reform Judaism

Seniors and children’s organizations
Alliance for Children and Families
Alliance for Retired Americans
Center for Medicare Advocacy, Inc.
Child Welfare League of America
Children's Defense Fund
Every Child Matters Education Fund
Family Voices
First Focus Campaign for Children
Generations United
Medicare Rights Center
National Association for Children’s Behavioral Health
National Association of Area Agencies on Aging
National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare
National Council on Aging
National Federation of Families for Children's Mental Health
National Senior Citizens Law Center
NCCNHR: The National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care
Society for Adolescent Medicine
The Children's Partnership
Voices for America's Children
Volunteers of America

Women’s organizations
Breast Cancer Network of Strength
Family Violence Prevention Fund
League of Women Voters of the United States
Legal Momentum
National Breast Cancer Coalition
National Cervical Cancer Coalition
National Partnership for Women & Families
National Research Center for Women & Families
National Women's Law Center
Our Bodies Ourselves
OWL - The Voice of Midlife and Older Women
U.S. Positive Women's Network
Wider Opportunities for Women
Women Together for Change