Eastern Kentuckians rally in support of health care for all

A video of the rally can be viewed on KFTC's Facebook page.

Eastern Kentuckians showed their support for health care for all at a rally in Pikeville Saturday that drew nearly 100 people.

“We’re here because we’re human beings and every human being deserves health care,” said Bev May, a Floyd County KFTC member who emceed the event. “Every life counts, and every life needs health care.”

Eastern Kentucky Rally for Health Care 7.29.17“What kind of country will be have without a healthy population?” asked Dr. Van Breeding, who practices in Whitesburg. “This is the most important foundation to any country, to have adequate health care.”

Dr. Breeding talked of the deeper level of access to care for many patients, expanded facilities and jobs, and the shift to more preventive care under the Affordable Care Act. He urged working to fix problems with the current system rather than dismantling it.

“We have got to come together and create a health care system so that every American has access to quality and low-cost health care,” he said. “We’re too close to solving this problem to let it fade away now.”

State representatives Angie Hatton and Chris Harris also cited the economic benefits, especially for the sixth congressional district that covers much of eastern Kentucky. That district, represented by Hal Rogers, has benefited as much or more than any district in the United States in terms of the number of uninsured people who gained health care and new jobs. Yet Rogers voted in the U.S. House to take away all those gains.

A strong and inspiring poem was read by Mikaela Curry. Randy Wilson and Kelli and Scott Robinson provided music throughout the program.

Kasie Wallace and Caci Gibson told personal stories how access to health care made all the difference in the quality of their lives. They called for elected officials who would better represent their constituents.

"What does it say about us as a nation and humankind if we ignore the most vulnerable," asked Charly Sholty.

Cara Stewart of the Kentucky Equal Justice Center reminded the crowd of Gov. Bevin's plan to take away health care services from 95,000 Kentuckians through proposed changes in the Medicaid program. Public comments on his plan are due by August 2.

Dr. Garrett Adams acknowledged that the Affordable Care Act "did a good job … but we can go forward to a single payer plan."

The rally was concluded with minister Rob Musick citing the spiritual foundation of caring for one another. "This is a fundamental moral issue … that people are made in the image of God and they deserve [health care]."

Eastern Kentucky Rally for Health Care 7.29.17

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