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PNHP RESOURCES

Health Coverage for All Americans, Letter to the Editor

The New York Times
April 8, 2001

To the Editor:

It is shocking that President Bush's budget would gut the financing for health care access for the uninsured, specifically community access programs, especially after he campaigned in favor of expanding community and migrant health centers (front page, April 4).

Nearly 43 million Americans have no coverage at all. Some 30 million Americans are underinsured; when serious illness strikes, gaps in their coverage leave them with devastating out-of-pocket expenses. Employers are shifting more costs to employees as health costs spiral. With the economy softening, some employers may drop coverage, and many millions of newly unemployed people will be unable to afford to keep their coverage.

Congress should address the critical issue of providing all consumers with affordable, quality health coverage.

GAIL SHEARER
Director, Health Policy Analysis, Consumers Union
Washington, April 5, 2001