American Public Health Association
800 I Street, NW • Washington, DC 20001-3710
(202) 777-APHA • Fax: (202) 777-2534 •

For Immediate Release
For more information, please contact APHA Communications at 202-777-2509 or email us .

APHA Expresses Grave Disappointment in Health Reform Ruling in Virginia

Statement from Georges C. Benjamin, MD, FACP, FACEP (E), executive director of the American Public Health Association

Washington, D.C., December 13, 2010 – “ The American Public Health Association is deeply disappointed by the ruling of a federal judge in Virginia today to strike down a measure in the historic health reform law that requires most Americans to have health insurance.

“The Affordable Care Act for the first time would begin to fill the gaps of a once-broken health system by making insurance more affordable to obtain through federal subsidies. Any effort that threatens or weakens the protections provided by the Affordable Care Act is misguided and would unduly put the future health of millions of Americans at perilous risk.

“Having access to quality, affordable health insurance is a fundamental human right and not a privilege. Unfortunately, the ruling by U.S. District Judge Henry Hudson today stands to unravel all of the enormous progress already made at dramatically improving the health care quality and delivery in this country.

“The American Public Health Association has been a dedicated and vocal advocate of ensuring access to care for all Americans and will continue to work to protect this life-saving provision included in the Affordable Care Act as the case moves to the U.S. Supreme Court.”

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Founded in 1872, the APHA is the oldest, largest and most diverse organization of public health professionals in the world. The association aims to protect all Americans and their communities from preventable, serious health threats and strives to assure community-based health promotion and disease prevention activities and preventive health services are universally accessible in the United States. APHA represents a broad array of health providers, educators, environmentalists, policy-makers and health officials at all levels working both within and outside governmental organizations and educational institutions. More information is available at