Our 2021 Policy Priorities

Adopted by our sponsoring organizations December 15, 2020
Printable version here.

In 2021, the nation’s most urgent challenge will be to defeat COVID in order to address the crises of public health, economic recovery, and racial inequity. This will require major federal relief and a stronger public health infrastructure aligned with community needs. Below are the goals and policy proposals we believe HCHR should prioritize in our 2021 campaigns. 

Goals guiding our work for 2021

  • Make progress towards universal health care in WA State and our nation
  • Improve affordability of healthcare
  • Achieve racial equity and overcome disparities
  • Protect what we have now

Questions to consider when ‘filtering’ bills
for the WA Legislative session:  

1. Does the issue enhance/support the mission/goals of HCHR? 
2. Does this issue advance equity and/or move Washington towards universal coverage? 
3. Does the issue have a critical mass of advocates/legislators? 
4. Does the issue have a core leadership of organizations that have a clear and realistic strategy for how they’re going to pass the bill? 

State Legislative Agenda

Note: Most bills yet to be finalized in these priority areas: 

  • Prevent cuts to health care and income support programs
  • Raise the revenue necessary to prevent these cuts
  • Advancing health equity by improving affordability and access to care

+ Pathway to universal health coverage (steps forward based on Universal Health Care Work Group  recommendations)
+ Health System Transparency (cost)
+ Medicaid postpartum coverage (increase to 1 year)
+ Immigrant health access
+ Cascade Care subsidies
+ Dental and mental health access
+ Insulin manufacturing (public and affordable)

Federal Legislative Agenda

Includes “North Star” aspirational proposals: 

  • Free COVID-19 vaccine for everyone when available 
  • Ensure all taxpayer-funded COVID-19 drugs be affordable, accessible, and available to all those who need them (H.R. 7296, S. 4439) 
  • Health Care Emergency Guarantee Act (HR 6906, S 3790)
  • State-Based Universal Health Care Act (HR 5010) – carry forward from 2020
  • National Single-payer – Improved Medicare for All (HR 1384, S. 1129) – carry forward
  • Defend and strengthen existing programs (Public Health, Medicaid, Medicare, ACA,  reproductive rights, Community Health Centers funding . . .) – carry forward
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