GGAHU President Cathy Little posing with NAHU President Mike Embry at 2018 Capitol Summit
Golden Gate represented by sending seven members from our Chapter to the 2018 Capitol Conference in Washington, DC in February. The theme for this year's Conference was Shaping Healthcare's Future Through Advocacy. The weather was extremely mild, so we were able to enjoy it. After the morning Briefing with NAHU Government Relations staff on federal priorities followed by the Open Forum Town Hall, conference goers had a plethora of interesting choices for breakout sessions, covering topics such as Level Funding, Medicare, Compliance, and Single Payer. NAHU CEO Janet Trautwein gave her analysis and outlook on the current political climate.
GGAHU Members Cathy Little and Valrie Joy Williams lobbying Congressman Mark DeSaulnier (D-CA-1) on Capitol Hill
Members of GGAHU arranged visits with their Congressional Representatives on the Hill to educate and advocate for meaningful changes in laws and regulations that will increase stability in the health insurance markets and make health plans more affordable and accessible. A sampling of our recommendations included preserving the employer tax exclusion, repeal of the Cadillac/Excise Tax and HIT tax, allow any person to purchase catastrophic-category coverage regardless of age or income status, and modify the Medicare Advantage marketing rules to suspend the scope of appointment requirements for agents, allowing better counseling for beneficiaries. For a complete list of federal priorities as well as NAHU's legislative successes you can visit the website or contact Chris Hartmann, Vice President of Congressional Affairs.
First-time conference goer Anne Marie Foley shares her thoughts on her experience at Capitol Conference
"On the last week of February, I spent 3 days in Washington DC listening to how NAHU advocates for brokers and helps us advocate for ourselves. On the first day, we learned the key issues in the Medicare, Employer Sponsored, and Individual marketplaces. We also had a dynamic break out session that focused on single payer systems in other countries that was led by Janet Trautwein.
On Tuesday and
Wednesday, we heard from members of our House and Senate as well as Peter Lee, the Executive Director of Covered California and Eric Hargan, Deputy Secretary of Health and Human Services.
The session that I enjoyed the most was led by Representatives Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ) and Tom Reed (R-NY) from the Problem Solvers Caucus. They focus on developing relationships with people they trust and building a culture of getting to a yes. It is a bipartisan group in our Congress that includes 24 democrats and 24 republicans. They vote as a block once they get 75% of their group to agree on an issue. I was encouraged by their presentation. A lot of my clients thought I would leave Washington D.C. feeling cynical, but I felt a lot of hope after hearing from the Problem Solvers Caucus."