Washington, D.C., March 23, 2011 – The American Public Health Association today marks the one-year anniversary of the Affordable Care Act, a groundbreaking law that is ushering in a fundamental shift in the nation’s health system to emphasize disease prevention, health promotion and wellness.
“Last year, the president and Congress made a collective commitment to reduce soaring health care costs and improve access to quality, affordable health care that has eluded millions of Americans for far too long,” said Georges C. Benjamin, MD, FACP, FACEP (E), executive director of APHA. “Thanks to their action, countless families across the country are now reaping tremendous health benefits and counting on the lifesaving provisions included in the measure to continue to protect their health and well-being.”
Established under the law, the Prevention and Public Health Fund represents the first time that our country has made a sustained, dedicated investment in improving public health. The Fund:
- supports critical disease and injury prevention programs in low-income and underserved communities;
- tackles a range of health concerns such as combating obesity and tobacco use and improving flu prevention; and
- strengthens state and local public health infrastructure by supporting data collection and analysis for community- and clinically based prevention activities and expanding and improving training for the public health workforce.
“On behalf of the public health community, we call on Congress to protect the Affordable Care Act and the lifesaving provisions included in the law that provide millions of Americans the opportunity to live full, healthy lives,” said Benjamin.
In June, APHA will host a pivotal meeting in Chicago to examine what lies ahead for public health departments and agencies in implementing the provisions of the health law and improving health outcomes in communities across the country. For more about the APHA Midyear Meeting, visit http://www.apha.org/midyear/.