The Board of Stewardship Trustees has endorsed Catholic Health Initiatives’ advocacy priorities for 2005 through 2006. “These highest priorities for our advocacy efforts were developed with input from the Advocacy Advisory Committee, participants at the 2004 National Leadership Conference, market-based chief executives and the National Leadership Team,” said Colleen Scanlon, RN, JD, senior vice president of advocacy for Catholic Health Initiatives.
The priority issues will receive special emphasis in Catholic Health Initiatives’ overall advocacy efforts, which will address a broad range of issues of importance to the organization and the communities we serve. “The broader advocacy agenda is under development and will be distributed when completed,” said Scanlon. Catholic Health Initiatives’ priority advocacy issues include: Access and Coverage for All Preserve existing health care coverage and expand coverage to every person in the United States, beginning with children. Charitable Purpose Promote and live out our charitable purpose by providing and demonstrating measurable community benefit. Fair Payment to Providers Seek fair and equitable payments under Medicare and Medicaid that preserve beneficiary access and avoid undue harm to providers. Non-Violence Pursue efforts to improve safety and reduce violence to foster the building of healthy communities. In addition to the four priorities, two more public policy issues were identified for concerted advocacy efforts during the next year: medical liability reform and physician-owned, limited-service hospitals. “While these issues have varied impact throughout Catholic Health Initiatives, they are very significant in the health care policy landscape,” said Scanlon. Catholic Health Initiatives’ advocacy activities won’t necessarily be limited to the priority issues. “Changing political, social and health care realities may force other issues that require our attention into the forefront, but we will also remain steadfast in pursuing our highest priorities,” said Scanlon. “All of these activities help position Catholic Health Initiatives as an informative and influential leader in health and social policy.” For more information on Catholic Health Initiatives’ advocacy agenda, contact Colleen Scanlon at firstname.lastname@example.org.