Friday, June 15, 2012

Celebration or frustration?: Charlotte & the Supreme Court health reform decision

Are you as nervous as I am? Cause I'm pretty nervous. In fact, just thinking about the upcoming Supreme Court decision on the fate of the Affordable Care Act makes me feel like I've had one too many cups of much-too-strong coffee. My fingers are so crossed right now that I'm not sure if I'll ever be able to straighten them out again.

What does make me feel better is knowing that around the same time the Supreme Court decision is released I'll be surrounded by fellow public health admirers and practitioners who also believe that health care should be a right and not a privilege. That's because this blogger will be at APHA's 2012 Midyear Meeting in Charlotte, N.C., which takes place June 26–28, and I hope you'll be there too.

Of course, whichever way the decision comes down, it's sure to be THE topic of conversation at the Charlotte gathering. That means not only will attendees have the chance to mull over the (good or bad) news with colleagues from across the country, we'll also get to hear perspectives from some of the nation's top public health leaders.

And whether the court comes down for or against the historic health reform law, either decision means public health has some major work to do, which is what the Midyear Meeting is all about — getting public health ready to survive and thrive into the future. (Already on the meeting schedule for the evening of Tuesday, June 26, is a special session called "29 States, Nine Justices, Two Lawsuits: What does it all mean for the nation's health?")

To learn more about what exactly was argued before the Supreme Court, check out this article from APHA's The Nation's Health newspaper. And for perspectives from public health advocates on what they thought of the health reform arguments before the Supreme Court, check out this article from the public health blog The Pump Handle. (Disclosure: This article was also written by yours truly.)

APHA also commissioned a new analysis by the National Health Law Program of the major issues at stake and potential rulings.

Here's to hoping that Charlotte will be a time for celebration! Keep those fingers crossed!

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