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Advocacy Diary

International Medical Missions; One “Eye-opening” Experience

By Zaiba Malik on Sep 9, 2013| 1 comment

It was not the most exotic location I could think of to serve. When my husband questioned the local safety and political atmosphere in the country, I smiled and said, “it’s no big deal; it’s luscious Ecuador. “ I conveniently forgot to mention to him that San Lorenzo was often referred to as the crime capital of Ecuador.  A Christian mission group was holding a cataract camp in San Lorenzo, Ecuador and was looking for one more ophthalmologist to complete their team. I jumped at the opportunity, as I was looking for just this type of camp, utilizing the Manual Small Incision technique popularized in India; which is cost effective, efficient, and safe. On day one, we awoke to a hot and humid 85 degree-weather day. I untangled myself out of the makeshift...

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A Voters Guide to the Health Care Policy of the Obama Administration

By Khadija Gurnah on Nov 5, 2012| 0 comments

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) is the signature healthcare policy from the Obama      administration, yet it seems that much of the voting public is still unsure of what the plan actually entails. A large part of the problem is that the ACA addresses issues as diverse as funding for health information technology to controlling prescription costs. Fundamentally, the way that the ACA will impact voters most are in the provisions designed to contain healthcare costs for national and household budgets. Healthcare spending in the U.S. stands at 17.9% of GDP.  The rate of spending has increased over the decades, driven by rising prescription drug costs, a rise of chronic diseases and administrative costs that are higher than most western nations due to the...

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A Voter’s Guide to Healthcare Policy of the Romney Campaign

By Shifa Mohiuddin on Nov 5, 2012| 0 comments

The Republican healthcare ticket for Election 2012 profoundly contrasts with its Democratic counterpart on a host of key issues: Affordable Care Act (ACA) If elected, Governer Romney has pledged to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA), dubbed by many as ‘ObamaCare.’  His opposition stems largely from the Republican view that the latest major healthcare overhaul represents government intrusion in a free-market economy: “From its start, it (ObamaCare) was about power, the expansion of government control over one-sixth of our economy, and resulted in an attack on our Constitution, by requiring US citizens to purchase health insurance. It was the high-water mark of an outdated liberalism, the latest attempt to impose upon Americans a euro-style bureaucracy...

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Recent Immigrants Still Falling Through the Cracks in Obtaining Affordable Care

By S.M. Zeeshan Qadar on Sep 26, 2012| 0 comments

One might contend that the US health care system is like patchwork, with various components stitched together. In reality, the US health care system is more akin to a spider web, with strings being pulled by various stakeholders and interests groups. According to Grumbach, the U.S. health care system is not a system per se, but rather a free market where health care is a commodity regulated by market forces. There are no fixed regulations on pricing and everything revolves around demand and supply. These market forces are key to understanding why the U.S has the highest quality health care available and spends the most on health care, yet according to the World Health Organization still ranks very poorly amongst developed nations in access to care. Research...

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White House Minority Health Summit: Policy Q&A

By Khizer Husain on Jul 14, 2012| 1 comment

I had the pleasure of representing AMHP at the White House’s first Minority Health Summit.  Secretary Kathleen Sebelius offered remarks which gave context to comments by a panel which included members of Latino and black media, famed restaurateur B Smith, and health policy analysts.   AMHP the government’s policy team the following questions submitted to us by our members:   1).What will be the fate of free clinics?  Does the Administration see any funds and non-financial resources coming to free clinics in the short run? The Health Resources and Services Administration’s (HRSA) Free Clinics Federal Tort Claims Act Program (FTCA) extends medical malpractice liability coverage under the FTCA to individuals who meet Program and statutory requirements...

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The Individual Mandate Explained

By Khadija Gurnah on Jun 30, 2012| 3 comments

In 2010, the Obama administration signed the Affordable Care Act (ACA), enacting several important health reforms. A key provision of the act is an individual mandate that will come into effect in 2014.  The individual mandate is a law that would require all legal residents of the United States to have health insurance. Individuals who fail to secure coverage will be taxed a penalty that would depend on their income level, with exemptions for those experiencing financial hardship. The individual mandate has been a very contentious part of the ACA; consequently, a majority of states collectively challenged the constitutionality of the act in federal court.  On Thursday, June 28th, the Supreme Court upheld the ACA, with one significant caveat.  The Supreme Court...

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