Patient Advocacy Groups Proudly Endorse Proposition 3

SALT LAKE CITY –Seven Patient Advocacy groups gathered on Wednesday, August 22nd at the American Cancer Society Hope Lodge in Salt Lake City. Representatives from each group made statements in support of Proposition 3 to expand healthcare to 150,000 Utahns.

The Patient Advocacy Groups who made statements were:
• American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network
• Epilepsy Foundation Utah
• American Heart Association
• Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
• American Diabetes Association
• National Multiple Sclerosis Society
• Susan G. Komen

Proposition 3 is a citizen’s ballot initiative to expand healthcare access to 150,000 Utahns. It would expand Medicaid to individuals earning less than $17,000 per year, or parents earning less than $34,000 per year for a family of four. This measure will raise the sales tax on non-grocery items in Utah by 0.15 percent—equivalent to the cost of a cent on a movie ticket—to cover the cost of bringing life-saving medical care to tens of thousands of Utahns, some for the very first time.

“Nearly 11,000 Utahns will be diagnosed with cancer this year, and we know that having access to affordable and adequate health coverage will be one of the biggest factors of their survival,” said Brook Carlisle, Utah Government Relations Director for the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network. “Expanding Utah’s Medicaid program will ensure that our low-income cancer patients, survivors, and those at risk for the disease can access life-saving preventive screenings, diagnostic testing, and treatments that they may not have access to otherwise.”

Marc Watterson, Director of Government Relations for the American Heart Association said, “If Low-income Utahns remain uninsured and without access to healthcare services to manage their risk factors and chronic conditions, they will seek emergency care as complications develop—which will only further burden our state’s healthcare system.” He went on say, “Like many of the diseases represented here today, cardiovascular disease and stroke are preventable, but critical to prevention is the ability to affordably consult with a physician on how best to manage risk factors before problems start.”

The American Cancer Society Hope Lodge has graciously allowed space to hold this press conference. Cancer patients and their families are currently staying at the Hope Lodge and we wish to respect their privacy as they recover from treatment. Accordingly, no Hope Lodge residents will be available for comments.

Each of the Patient Advocacy Groups will have representatives available for interviews directly after the press event concludes.

To learn more about Proposition 3 to secure and
expand healthcare for vulnerable Utahns please visit www.utahdecides.org.
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