GUEST COLUMN: Pass the public option for a better healthcare system | Opinion

The Affordable Care Act, signed by President Barack Obama on March 23, 2010, was a monumental accomplishment that protected those with preexisting conditions, expanded preventive care, lowered drug prices, provided small business tax credits, and lowered the rate of uninsured Americans by 40%, from 44 million to 27 million people.

Despite those gains, over 27 million Americans remain uninsured and an additional 56 million Americans remain underinsured. I want to be clear: health care should be a right of all Americans, not a privilege reserved for a few.

I believe that every American deserves basic health care coverage and access to a quality provider network in their community. Twenty-one countries guarantee 100% health care coverage for their citizenry. The United States of America has less than 92% coverage through either a publicly provided option – Medicare, Medicaid, SCHIP, VHA, or IHS, or a private plan provided through an employer. Over

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