If there was ever a critical time to put a stake in the ground for Texas health care, it’s now. It’s a new year. There are major elections around the corner that will have a significant impact on health care. Plus, it’s a Census year, with the federal government launching its once-a-decade official calculation of the country’s population and demographics.
Health care is one of the most important issues for voters this year, and candidates who are elected to represent us will have to decide how, if at all, to address rising health care costs, barriers to access care, calls for Medicare for All, a federal solution to surprise billing and much more. The health care decisions they make will have lasting consequences or benefits for our work, patients and community. That’s why your vote in Texas’ March 3 primary election is absolutely necessary.
Texas hospital leaders are encouraged to learn more about the candidates and their positions and exercise your constitutional right and privilege to vote. The public officials we elect will make important decisions regarding health care policy and funding, and everyone has a vital role in choosing who gets to make these decisions.
In addition to key elections, the 2020 U.S. Census will occur in April and will determine billions of dollars in federal funding for critical health programs, including Medicare, Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program, each year.
This information even determines the number of seats each state will have in the U.S. House of Representatives and is used to re-draw congressional and state legislative districts to more accurately reflect fluctuating population sizes.
Knowing where people live and work is an important part of having a strong health care infrastructure in which Texas communities can access timely care. An accurate Census count not only helps secure federal funding for health care services, it also helps ensure we can reach patients where they are.
The Texas Hospital Association provides resources for your hospitals to use and customize to engage staff and patients in the election and the Census.
Visit www.tha.org/stateadvocacy for THA’s Get Out the Vote resources and www.tha.org/census for THA’s census resources.