LETTER: Where do we go from here?

To the editor:

Now that the campaign is over, where do we go from here?  Believe it or not, there is pending legislation in the U.S. Congress that enjoys wide bipartisan support. HR. 3119, the Palliative Care and Hospice Education and Training Act is one such bill, with over 220 bipartisan cosponsors.

Representatives Jaime Herrera-Beutler, Derek Kilmer, Rick Larsen, Suzan DelBene, and Dave Reichert are cosponsors, along with others from the Washington State delegation east of the mountains.

HR. 3119 ensures expanded education, training, research and public awareness of palliative care impact on patients, families, and professional caregivers. The legislation would lift burdens for all ages, but would have tremendous positive impact on our aging population.

HR. 3119 addresses life-and-death issues -- improving care for older adults, supporting overburdened family caregivers, guaranteeing people with serious illness the kind of care that respects their goals and wishes, and building an age-friendly health system that works seamlessly across the continuum of care. These issues play a decisive societal role in the future health of our nation, our workforce, and our economy.
Historically, some of the biggest legislative successes happen in lame duck sessions.  Please encourage your elected representatives to pass HR. 3119 (and its companion Senate bill, S. 2748) before this session ends on December 31.  Passing this legislation would be much-needed validation that Congress can work for We, the People.  

Micki (Schomaker) Jackson

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