by Jenny Bright, Intern, Health Justice Program
On May 10, we continued our efforts to end segregated health care in New York Hospitals with a hearing before the New York State Assembly Health Committee, chaired by the Honorable Richard N. Gottfried.
The hearing was a major victory in our efforts! 60-70 people showed up to support our Health Equity Bill, A07699, sponsored by New York State Assemblymember Nelson Castro. Members of the community and community group representatives provided compelling testimony.
Thank you, in particular, to those who helped and participated. We look forward to continuing to make headway!
Last week, we met with the New York State Assembly/Senate Puerto Rican and Hispanic Task Force to discuss the issue of segregated care in New York private teaching hospitals and our Health Equity Bill (A07699/S5785).
We brought a small but mighty group of advocates, doctors, and community residents to present before the Task Force on this important issue. According to 2009 United Hospital Fund data, 61.2% of Latinos in New York are on Medicaid or uninsured – meaning that the steering of patients based on insurance type has a particularly strong impact on the Latino community. Access to quality-health care is already difficult for Latinos – language/cultural barriers, above-average poverty rates, restrictions on health care for immigrants, etc. – so the addition of unfair hospital policies, like segregated health care, which have no medical, financial, or moral grounds should not be allowed to continue in New York.
Our bill will make it illegal to separate patients based on insurance type so that all patients are treated with the same care, in the same setting, and with the same respect once they enter a hospital.
Special thanks to our partners, Bronx Health REACH, and bill sponsors, Assemblymember Nelson Castro and Senator Gustavo Rivera for joining us at the Task Force meeting.
Below, you can watch our presentation:
NYS Assembly/Senate Puerto Rican & Hispanic Task Force Meeting 02.29.12 from Somos New York
To view our powerpoint presentation from the Task Force meeting, click here.