Tucson Progressive

Pamela Powers Hannley, a progressive voice for Arizona

Healthcare Forum: We Want to Hear Your Stories

For the past 30 years, my career has focused on health promotion, disease prevention, behavioral research, and communications. I have seen, photographed, and written about the good, the bad and the ugly parts of our country’s healthcare “system”.

I saw the rise of HMOs (health maintenance organizations) in the 1980s. I cheered the Clintons for at least trying to fix the overly complicated mess in the early 1990s. I saw costs going up every year and service going down. I saw a health insurance system that was creaking under the weight of its own complexity, while big insurance and big pharma collected huge profits. As managing editor of the American Journal of Medicine, I stood proudly by the Editor-in-Chief when he and the Editorial Board called for Medicare for All on multiple occasions.

Along the way, I have heard stories about huge medical bills, uncompensated hospital care, outrageously expensive drugs, limited or delayed access to medical care, premature death and disease, medical bankruptcy, and the medical consequences of poverty.

Now, as a member of the Arizona House and the ranking Democrat on the Health Committee, I want to hear your stories.

200 stories healthcare forumDo you have concerns about the future of the Affordable Care Act, Medicare, Medicaid and Kids Care? Is the cost of medical care or prescription drugs a worry for your family? How would dramatic cuts to these programs impact you? Come to the 200 Stories: Tucson Healthcare Forum on Oct. 29.

I am appalled at Republican attempts to scrap the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and throw millions of Americans off of health insurance– when they really have no plan.The ACA used to have many plan choices but not anymore, as insurance companies leave the marketplace. Is the ACA perfect? No. Obviously, the ACA needs to be reformed. We must recognize that the ACA does much good in Arizona, thanks to Medicaid expansion. Also, an tens of thousands of Arizonans have good-paying jobs in the healthcare sector since ACA expanded coverage in Arizona. (Check out this report.)

Whether you are a patient or a provider, we want to hear your medical and health insurance stories. The LD9 and LD10 Legislators are holding an open mic forum in which we listen, you talk, and we all learn.

This is a free educational community event open to Pima County residents. It’s about listening and learning from each other. Senators David Bradley and Steve Farley and Representatives Kirsten Engel, Randy Friese, and I have confirmed their attendance. (Rep. Todd Clodfelter was invited but has a scheduling conflict.)

In the news, we hear what politicians and big corporations think should be done with our country’s healthcare/insurance system. At this event, the people of Southern Arizona will have an opportunity to tell us their stories and help shape future policy. This event will be videotaped and live-streamed via Facebook Live on my Facebook page here. We will have free childcare for the event.

Mark your calendars for October 29, 2017 from 1:30-3:30 at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Tucson, on 22nd St. Register here (so we have enough seats). Watch social media for updates.

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About

The Tucson Progressive: Pamela Powers Hannley

I stand on the side of Love. I believe in kindness to all creatures on Earth and the inherent self-worth of all individuals--not just people who agree with me or look like me.

Widespread economic and social injustice prompted me to become a candidate for the Arizona House, representing Legislative District 9 in the 2016 election. My platform focuses on economic reforms to grow Arizona's economy, establish a state-based public bank, fix our infrastructure, fully fund public education, growlocal small businesses and community banks, and put people back to work at good-paying jobs. I also stand for equal rights, choice, and paycheck fairness for women. I am running as a progressive and running clean.

My day job is managing editor for the American Journal of Medicine, an academic medicine journal with a worldwide circulation. In addition, my husband and I co-direct Arizonans for a New Economy, Arizona's public banking initiative. I am a member of the national board of the Public Banking Institute, and I am co-chair of the Arizona Democratic Progressive Caucus, the largest caucus of the Arizona Democratic Party.

I am a published author, photographer, videographer, clay artist, mother, nana, and wife. I have a bachelor's degree in journalism from Ohio State University and a masters in public health from the University of Arizona. I grew up in Amherst, Ohio, but I have lived in Tucson, Arizona since 1981. I am a proud member of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Tucson and the Public Relations Society of America.

My Tucson Progressive blog and Facebook page feature large doses of liberal ideas, local, state, and national politics, and random bits of humor. I also blog at Blog for Arizona and the Huffington Post.

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Alex’s first #turkey. #thanksgiving #tucson
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