Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Barbara Lee, Senator Mazie Hirono, CAPAC Chairwoman Judy Chu, CHC Chairwoman Michelle Lujan Grisham, and CBC Chairman Cedric Richmond released the following statement announcing the House introduction of the Health Equity and Accountability Act (HEAA) of 2018:
“The Health Equity and Accountability Act is a bold, comprehensive vision for addressing persistent ethnic and racial health disparities and improving health outcomes in communities of color. By building on the successes of the Affordable Care Act and improving care for the families who need it most, we can ensure that all Americans – no matter their race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, age or language background – can stay healthy.
“The racial disparities in health care are stunning and unacceptable. Diseases such as cancer, diabetes, HIV, heart disease, and hepatitis continue to disproportionately affect African American, Latino, Asian American, Pacific Islander, and Native Hawaiian populations. And despite coverage gains made under the Affordable Care Act, Latinos and African Americans are still at a higher risk of being uninsured.
“We must address the underlying challenges that prevent underserved communities from gaining coverage and accessing high-quality health care. The Health Equity and Accountability Act is a critical step towards ensuring that all Americans have the resources and care that they need to thrive.”
The Health Equity and Accountability Act has been introduced in every Congress since 2007. This legislation reforms policies and expands federal health care resources for racial and ethnic minorities, as well as other underserved populations who face discrimination and barriers to care due to their immigration status, sex, age, ability, sexual orientation, gender identity, and English proficiency.