Tell us what is needed most to keep you moving towards a world free of MS by weighing in on the Strategic Response at www.nmss.org
- MS ACTIVIST BLOG. Check out the latest federal news and share your views! http://msactivist.blogspot.com/
- ACTION ALERT NETWORK: Are you registered as an MS activist? We need your voice. One link will sign-you up to receive federal and state alerts to take action. Recruit a friend! http://www.nationalmssociety.org/get-involved/take-action/index.aspx
Advocacy on-line! The chapter site is currently being updated with information and helpful tools- check it out and stay updated, nationalMSsociety.org/advocacy
Funding MS Home Links
State funding for the chapter’s care management program was preserved in the final FY’10 budget, however we do not yet know the funding allocation for this program. Funding for the Community First 1115 Medicaid Waiver was not included. This waiver, if funded, would have provided an array of home and community based services for the first time for severely disabled younger adults.
Chapter bill SB2009 is a resolution urging Congress and the President to eliminate the two-year wait for Medicare which is in process and will be sent to Congress to urge the inclusion in national health care reform. Chapter bill SB582 urges the administration to waive spousal income when determining Medicaid eligibility for severely disabled adults. We supported SB 812, an act to ensure the availability of medications in time of an emergency and are determining other bill priorities.
l-r, Gov. John Lynch; Michelle Dickson, Advocacy Manager; Bill Godfrey, NH MS advocate; Ken Jones, Member of the Board
NMSS 2008 “Governor of the Year.”
Chapter staff and volunteers gathered to present Governor John Lynch with the National MS Society Governor of the Year Award for his efforts in the areas of health care and disability rights
The N.H. Government Relations Committee has filed legislation for the 2009 session. HB485 establishes a committee to study enforcement of the walking disability placard that will be signed into law. The bill passed the House and is in the Senate. HB564-FN, relative to designating some accessible parking spaces “Van Only,” was retained in the House until the second part of the session.
First Annual Public Policy Forum
Legislators, individuals with MS and other advocates gathered in the state capitol for Community Accessibility: Progress & Challenges. A panel discussion included Ken Jones, Chapter Board of Trustees, Wendy Beckwith, Governor’s Commission on Disability, Brandy Stanley, Manchester Parking Division, Rep Trinka Russell & James Foxx, Disability Rights Center
Government Relations Committee Seeks Members
This committee meets monthly in the Manchester office with conference call opportunities and welcomes new members with a passion for advocacy or professional, legal, public policy or health care experience. To inquire further, contact Michelle Dickson at 1-800-344-4867.
In June Congress introduced two health-care reform proposals, both of which include provisions important to people with MS.
- The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee (HELP), led by Sens. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) and Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.), introduced the “Affordable Health Choices Act,” which prohibits insurers from denying coverage based on pre-existing conditions and includes caps on out-of-pocket spending, support for long-term care and subsidized premiums for low- and middle-class families.
- The Energy and Commerce, Ways and Means, and Education and Labor Committees also released a draft bill with similar provisions.
Both drafts are expected to be debated in the House and Senate before Congress recesses this August.
Add Your Voice
As legislators prepare to make this bold move, the National MS Society encourages people living with MS to help influence the health-care reform debate by sharing the Society’s National Health Care Reform Principles (nationalMSsociety.org/reformprinciples) with members of Congress and their staff.
Join the movement at nationalMSsociety.org/advocacy.