According to recent studies, close to one third of Americans are having difficulty paying their medical and prescription medication bills. Researchers have found that overcrowding and long waits in emergency rooms lead to more patients dying or needing further hospital treatment.
- Our plan is to expand services in existing clinics and build new ones in communities where care is inadequate or nonexistent. Additional jobs will be created. Immigrant communities will be eligible to benefit from a comprehensive healthcare system. State-of-the-art diagnostic tools and treatments could eliminate overnight stays. Some clinics would offer urgent care surgical procedures and services. Additional facilities will lighten the burden on emergency rooms throughout the nation.
WHO (World Health Organization), explains that mental health is “a state of well-being in which the individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.” WHO emphasizes that mental health “is not just the absence of mental disorder.”
WHO verifies that mental health services are very underfunded. Most resources are channeled into treating and caring for mentally ill patients, rather than on an integrated mental health system. They say along with providing care in large psychiatric hospitals, mental health should be integrated into primary health care (general practice), be provided for in general hospitals, and there should be improvements and provisions in community-based mental health services.
In the UK, Canada, the U.S. and much of the developed world, mental disorders are the leading cause of disability among people aged fifteen to forty-four.
- Our plan is to provide funding for mental health disorders, which can actually affect someone more than a physical disability or illness and can affect anyone.
Family Planning and Counseling
There is a dilemma facing low income undocumented immigrants in the area of family planning. In order to be eligible for services, women are currently asked to prove legal residency. Without private or public insurance, the cost of effective birth control in the U.S. is too much for most immigrant women. Title X is the only source of federal funding that covers illegal or recent immigrants, and this program provides critical support to community clinics that offer family planning services to low-income migrants. These clinics have limited resources and because they are faced with such funding constraints, clinics must make hard decisions about the number of women who receive more expensive (more effective) contraceptive options. Clinics with a limited annual budget often choose to serve more women but with less effective family planning options.
- Our plan is to help fund those agencies that reach out to the underserved undocumented immigrant population. Immigrants will benefit from information and guidance given by knowledgeable professionals who can help in stressful situations like an unintended pregnancy.
Old enemies raise their ugly heads periodically in the world of health. Recently there has been an outbreak of whooping cough and various viruses that have reached epidemic proportions. It is an example of a recurring problem with ‘dead’ infective agents resurrecting. Since some of these diseases have the ability to spread rapidly through the population, most particularly in the schools, it is important that children and most adults be protected by vaccines.
- Our plan is to relieve the financial burden on the government and therefore, the taxpayers. Funds would be allocated for flu and other communicable disease vaccines in order to reduce or eliminate these dangerous illnesses that injure all ethnicities.
Research shows Latinos make up the highest number of uninsured people in the country. Due to lack of health insurance, Latinos are less likely to seek out preventive care. Under reform, proactive approaches to staying well and preventing the spread of illness and disease are considered top priorities. Undocumented immigrants will not be able to buy insurance on the new health insurance exchanges and therefore are not eligible for the benefits. Because preventive screenings and follow-up exams are important in catching medical conditions at early stages and prohibiting their progression, provision needs to be made for undocumented immigrants to get quality health care.
Chronic disease management can empower chronically ill immigrants to improve their health status. Consistent access to medical care is especially important for people with chronic conditions (heart disease, cancer, diabetes) as they must have regular tests, make specific lifestyle choices, and follow a specific and consistent medication regimen in order to manage their condition and prevent it from progressing.
- Our plan is to subsidize programs that reach out with health care options to undocumented immigrants as they continue on the path to becoming legalized. We also want to implement within the healthcare facilities the quality care necessary to control, prevent, and, where possible, eliminate chronic illnesses.